Welcome from Dr. Anne Weston
I have reflected often on why I became an educator. Sometimes, the memories are joyful, filled with faces of those who touched me along the way, my own teachers and coaches who nurtured and encouraged me. At other times, the memories are serious, recalling tragedies of literal and figurative lost lives and unrealized dreams. But ultimately, I believe I was called.
Author Parker Palmer in his book Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation has this to say: “Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you. Before you tell your life what truths and values you have decided to live up to, let your life tell you what truths you embody, what values you represent.”
I have tried to let my life speak, and it has led me to what I consider is the most sacred of all professions. I am most fortunate that I also have been called to a special holy ground, the very ground that shaped me for the life that is now living out in me. Ashley Hall…our School.
In 1961, my parents entrusted me to the care of Ashley Hall’s faculty and staff, forging a partnership that has lasted until this day. Ashley Hall’s mission is a powerful one that has stood the test of time: To produce educated women who are independent, 道德责任, and prepared to meet the challenges of society with confidence. This mission is what is or will be shaping your student in profound ways.
Today, Ashley Hall students are in the care of faculty and staff who feel privileged to partner with you—and them—in this journey, and they are awake and alive to this call to be educators. These words of Palmer summarize beautifully what I believe about these special professionals when he writes, “Good teachers possess a capacity for connectedness. They are able to weave a complex web of connections among themselves, their subjects, and their students so that students can learn to weave a world for themselves.”
I am honored to lead the Ashley Hall family and to be asked to play a role in the shaping of this generation of girls and boys. I am who I am today because of my years in this most special place, where I was known, where I was challenged, and where, most importantly, I was loved. Here, I learned to weave a world for myself. I know that we will do the same together for your children, and I am grateful for and humbled by your trust.
Anne T. Weston, PhD ’73
Head of School
Anne T. Weston, PhD ’73 | Ashley Hall Head of School
Dr. Anne Thornhill Weston ’73 is Ashley Hall’s sixth Head of School and the only alumna to hold the position. A seasoned and respected educator, Dr. Weston brings to her role a love of Ashley Hall, talent as a communicator, and positive leadership as a lifelong advocate for women and girls.
Having joined Ashley Hall as Assistant Head of School in July 2015, Dr. Weston was named Director of Upper School in 2018 and Head of School in 2022. Previously she served in a variety of posts with Heathwood Hall Episcopal School in Columbia, SC, including as teacher, Intermediate School and Upper School Principal, Assistant Head, Director of Advancement and Alumni Engagement, Provost and Interim Head of School. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Science Education from Duke University where she played on the women’s basketball team and also was a member of the sailing team. Dr. Weston holds a Master of Arts in Teaching with a concentration in Biology, and a Doctorate in Health Promotion and Education, both from the University of South Carolina.
With vibrant ties to alumnae, faculty, counselors and students, Dr. Weston is known for her collaborative skills in linking generations and inspiring girls to do their best work in academics, athletics and service. During her years as an Ashley Hall administrator, she has championed important curricular and wellness programs while celebrating an expanding record of student scholarship and college placements.
Known as much for her warmth and humanity as she is for her distinguished record as an educator, this former captain of Ashley Hall’s Purple Team is an enthusiastic participant in the treasured traditions of Ashley Hall. Whether sailing with students on the Offshore Leadership Program, running the school flag up the volleyball court, or playing a drum solo during Alumnae Weekend, everything Dr. Weston does embodies the indomitable Ashley Hall spirit.
At her core, Dr. Weston believes relationships are the foundation of any strong institution. Her leadership philosophy — one of collaboration among trusted partners — reflects this.
Dr. Weston assumes her position as Head of School at a time of record-high enrollment, vital community relationships and an outstanding and loyal faculty and parent body whose dedication is truly matchless. Her strategic priorities include bolstering rich and worthy traditions and forward-thinking innovations alike — from new senior administrators to helm academics and student life, to enhancing the athletic facilities and experience, renovating and expanding best-in-class STEAM programs, and growing the school’s already noteworthy performing arts program.
Dr. Weston is herself inspired by founder and former Head of School Mary Vardrine McBee, who established Ashley Hall as a powerful community of learning for girls who know who they are and fearlessly pursue their dreams. Under Dr. Weston’s able leadership, Ashley Hall will endure as a place of growth and achievement for young women who will continue making their mark on the world for generations.