New York, NY—The National Association of Episcopal Schools (NAES) honored Rena H. DuBose and the Reverend Richardson W. Schell at ceremonies during its Biennial Conference 2010 this past November 18–20 in San Antonio, Texas. Mrs. Dubose, recipient of NAES’ Ruth Jenkins Award, is a long-term Episcopal school head and diocesan and regional Episcopal school leader in Texas. Fr. Schell, currently the headmaster and rector at Kent School, Kent, Connecticut, was the recipient of the Association’s John D. Verdery Award. Both were saluted for their outstanding service to Episcopal schools and the Association.
Rena H. DuBose
Rena H. DuBose was, for thirty years, headmistress of St. David’s Episcopal School in San Antonio, Texas. A long-term Episcopal school leader in the Diocese of West Texas, she is a member of its Diocesan Episcopal School Commission and was its first chair, serving in that capacity for fifteen years. She was a board member of the Southwestern Association of Episcopal Schools (SAES) from 1981 until 2007. Along with Elizabeth Hollaman, she was instrumental in establishing the first accreditation standards for use by SAES.
Upon completion of her college education, Mrs. BuBose was, at the age of twenty-one, the founding kindergarten director at the Good Samaritan Community Services Center in San Antonio. She remained there for a year and a half. Leaving upon her marriage. She subsequently served on the board of the Good Samaritan Center (1953-1958). Beginning in 1958 she worked at the Inmann Christian Center. In 1960 she began her first tenure as headmistress of St. David’s Episcopal School, during which time her daughter, Martha, was born. Mrs. Dubose was fired in 1962 because at the time, the rector believed that mothers should not work.
In 1965, Mrs. Dubose followed up a return stint at the Inmann Christian Center with a ten-year tenure as kindergarten teacher and head of school at Santa Fe Episcopal Mission. She returned to St. David’s Episcopal School in 1979, where she remained until her retirement.
An avid supporter many of San Antonio’s cultural and educational institutions, Mrs. DuBose has served as president of the San Antonio Art League. She has two children: Martha, a PGA golf pro at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California; and David, a school psychologist in San Antonio.
About the Ruth Jenkins Award
The Ruth Jenkins Award is named in honor of a co-founder of NAES who was head of school at Annie Wright School in Tacoma, Washington, and the Bishop’s School in La Jolla, California. An advocate for women’s leadership in the Episcopal Church, Dr. Jenkins was elected in 1949 as one of four women deputies to the General Convention of the Episcopal Church; attending the Convention, all were refused their seats. This incident opened the way to her participation in the national Joint Commission to Consider the Problems of Giving the Women of the Church a Voice in the Legislation of the General Convention (1951) and in subsequent General Conventions of the Episcopal Church. The award recognizes outstanding service to and leadership in Episcopal schools and NAES.
The Reverend Richardson W. Schell
The Reverend Richardson W. ("Dick") Schell has been headmaster and rector of Kent School, Kent, Connecticut, since 1981, when he was appointed at the age of thirty. As a member of the NAES Governing Board, Fr. Schell chaired its task force on long-range planning. He has consulted informally with Episcopal schools across the country and abroad and been instrumental in the recent formation of a new program in Educational Leadership & Ministry at Yale Divinity School.
Fr. Schell was born in Evanston, Illinois, in 1951. Having graduated from Kent School in 1969, he received his bachelor’s degree in history (magna cum laude) from Harvard College in 1973 and his master of divinity degree from the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale University in 1976. Following ordination as an Episcopal priest in the Diocese of Chicago in 1976, he served as curate of the Church of the Holy Spirit, Lake Forest, Illinois (1976-1980). He returned to Kent to teach and coach and serve as chaplain and chairman of the theology department beginning in the fall of 1980.
Fr. Schell is a director of the Connecticut Association of Independent Schools and has been a director of AppleTree Institute for Education Innovation in Washington, D.C. He has been a member of the Commission on Overseas Schools of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. He has chaired numerous evaluation and accreditation committees in New England.
Fr. Schell has served Kent School with love and devotion, fostering its diversity by enabling students from a wide variety of backgrounds to pursue their education. During his tenure as headmaster, he has led four capital campaigns in support of faculty salaries, scholarship assistance, and the renewal and expansion of the campus. In 2006 he received the Chief Executive Leadership Award of the Council for the Support and Advancement of Education.
About the John D. Verdery Award
The John D. Verdery Award is named in honor of the long-term headmaster (1942–1976) of Wooster School in Danbury, Connecticut. A co-founder of NAES, Mr. Verdery, an Episcopal priest, was an articulate advocate for the value of Episcopal education and the religious identity of our schools. His most important essay on this topic was “Why Church Schools.” A president of the NAES Governing Board, he was instrumental in nurturing NAES as an organization through his hands-on leadership at critical points during the Association’s early years. The award recognizes outstanding service to and leadership in Episcopal schools and NAES.