Rice Memorial announces new principal

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Tue, 03/13/2018 - 1:30pm -- Denise Sortor

The Most Reverend Christopher J Coyne, Bishop of Burlington and President of Rice Memorial High School [RMHS] and the RMHS School Board are pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Lisa Lorenz of Milton as the new Principal of Rice. This year, Ms Lorenz has been serving at Rice as Interim Principal and now takes on this permanent role effective today. She will continue in her role as Superintendent of Schools for the remainder of the school year.

The process of finding a new Principal for Rice was a long and careful one. Last summer, the Diocese of Burlington hired Partners in Mission, a Catholic education consulting firm, to conduct a nationwide search for a Principal. To allow for ample time to conduct the search, Ms Lorenz agreed to act as Interim Principal for the 2017-18 academic year, planning to return to her job as the Superintendent of Catholic Schools for the Diocese when the new Principal was hired.

“I had every intention of returning to my role as Superintendent. However, after a few months at Rice, I fell in love with the school and, with the encouragement of many parents and faculty, I felt the call to apply for the Principal position.”

Ms Lorenz then added her application to a pool of highly qualified candidates. All of the candidates went through a rigorous interview process by the Principal Search Committee made up of Rice School Board members, staff and faculty members, Rice parents, and Diocesan staff members. After several rounds of interviews, the Search Committee recommended Lorenz for the position. The Bishop and School Board concurred she was the most qualified candidate.

“I was surprised that Lisa decided to apply because she had been so strong in her intent to return to the Superintendent’s role. But Rice grew on her. She loved being there with the students, faculty, and Rice families and found herself being caught up in Rice’s mission of education and formation. So she asked me if she could apply for the position. We both agreed that she had to go through the process like everyone else with no direct appointment by me. In the end, I am very pleased Lisa is staying at Rice,” stated Bishop Christopher Coyne. “While Rice’s gain is a Diocesan-wide loss, I fully support her decision.”

Rice community members can meet and hear from Ms Lorenz and other administrative staff members, as well as Bishop Coyne at a State of the School meeting scheduled for April 4 at 5:30pm in the Rice gym.

Lisa has a BA in psychology from Rutgers University, 1994, a MA in Moral Theology from St Charles Borromeo, 1997, and a MS in Pastoral Counseling from Loyola University, 2008. She has over 27 years of experience in Catholic, public and private education. Lisa began her career as a middle school teacher, then became an administrator, a licensed counselor, Coordinator for Counseling Programs for both Mental Health and School Counseling in Higher Education, and principal of St Therese Digital Academy Online High School. She is a licensed counselor in Vermont.

This year, Rice Memorial High School celebrates its Centennial anniversary. Originally founded as Cathedral High School in 1917, the school moved to its present location on Proctor Avenue in South Burlington in January 1959 and changed its name to Rice Memorial High School. Its mission has remained the same for 100 hundred years: to guide students toward the realization of their God-given potential by teaching them to recognize and develop their gifts, and inspiring them to love learning, serve others, and seek God.