It is the time of year when we prepare to celebrate our students as they move to new grade levels, new campuses, new environments, and new adventures. Along with these changes, we will celebrate the completion of our new Middle School building, breaking ground on construction of the Saltair Building, and beginning other improvements throughout our campuses. The constant theme in all of this is change. It is happening everywhere at Brentwood School. As a strong proponent of team sports, I know that navigating these changes requires a "total team effort".
Upon accepting the offer to join the Brentwood School community last February, I was excited to become a member of a team charged with leading the largest transformation of our campuses in school history. Leading up to my July start date, my mind kept replaying one of Dr. Mike's interview questions, "Setting aside all aspects of this position for a moment, what does an ideal job look like to you?"
That was easy, I thought. "Solving complex business, financial and operational problems," I said. "Given my educational and professional background, I'm wired to solve problems." Dr. Mike looked at me and said, "Good, because we have lots of growth challenges that we will need to solve over the next several years." Reflecting back on this exchange, it was by far the understatement of the year!
On the surface, the school had undertaken the ambitious goal of expanding its physical plant to accommodate more students, while creating a more inclusive and innovative learning environment by the 2020 school year. "Behind the scenes," it has required a Herculean effort.
What I have come to appreciate more than anything is the incredibly fast pace at which everyone is moving to implement these changes in such a short period of time. Fortunately for us, it is the result of a "total team effort."
As I approach the end of my first year at Brentwood School, without question, this experience has provided me with the complex problem solving that I longed for, as well as the steady sense of accomplishment resulting from reaching each milestone along the way. None of the changes realized to date would have been possible without a great team.
Have a great weekend!
Steven Tolbert, Chief Financial and Operations Officer