Who We Are

Leadership Team

“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.” –John F. Kennedy
We believe that the best leaders are the ones who continually grow and evolve. Just like our students we learn from each other, our faculty, and our parent community each and every day, as we work together to make Evergreen the best possible place for children to reach their potential.

List of 9 items.

  • Halsey Bell

    Head of School
    University of Montana – M.A.
    Duke University – B.A.
     
    Halsey is an exceptional administrator and educator with over 23 years of experience in independent schools. He joined Evergreen as upper division head in 2013 and became the head of school in 2020. Prior to Evergreen, Halsey served in numerous roles at Seattle Academy of Arts and Sciences, including teacher, outdoor/international program head, history department chair, dean of students in the upper school and assistant head of the middle school. He was a member of Giddens School, Board of Trustees for five years, serving on the Executive and Finance Committees and chairing the Facilities Committee. He is currently a member of Seattle Academy's Risk Management Subcommittee. Halsey takes pride in being a teacher, having taught courses in world geography, Islam, and United States, European, Chinese and Indian history. In his spare time, Halsey serves as vice president of the Seattle Youth Lacrosse Club Board and coaches lacrosse for Seattle Wolfpack.

  • Stephanie Wright

    Upper Division Head 
    Rutgers University - Ph.D.
    University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign - M.A.
    Tufts University - M.A.T.
    Spelman College - B.A.
     
    Dr. Stephanie Wright is a long-time leader and educator. She joined The Evergreen School in 2020, coming to us from Lakeside School, where during her tenure she was head of the History Department as well as a history teacher, and she served as a faculty equity coordinator as well. Stephanie also has a long involvement with the Rainier Scholars organization, where she has facilitated leadership training seminars since 2012. Before moving to Seattle, she was an assistant professor of history and co-coordinator of the Africana Studies Program at the University of West Georgia, and she also spent a year as a postdoctoral fellow with the American Association of University Women (AAUW), one of only 10 fellows in the nation. Outside of school, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her family, reading novels, and visiting National Parks.
  • Michelle Harrison

    Interim Primary Division Head 
    Saint Michael’s College – B.A  


    Michelle is an experienced educator with a background as an instructional coach and curriculum designer, as well as over 25 years of teaching experience, primarily in the elementary grades. She has been at Evergreen for 15 years and continually takes on new challenges, including serving as self-study co-coordinator throughout the year of Evergreen's recent reaccreditation process by NWAIS, and most recently, as the chair of the Academic Task Force during the summer of 2020, responsible for leading the development of academic plans in preparation for the unprecedented 2020-2021 school year. As the parent of a current Evergreen middle school student, Michelle brings the first-hand perspective of a parent as well as an educator to this role. 
  • Debbie Lee-Rizzi

    Chief Financial Officer
    San Jose State University – B.A.
     
    Debbie has been ensuring financial health of Evergreen since 2013.  Before coming to Evergreen she spent ten years managing the finances of independent schools in Hawaii and Virginia. In addition to her job as our Chief Financial Officer, Debbie loves being involved with schools in their daily activities, including working on sustainability efforts, wellness and helping out in school-wide events wherever needed. In her spare time, she loves watching sports, especially football and basketball, spending time with her family and hiking.

  • Danielle Ladd

    Director of Special Programs
    Western Washington University – B.A.
     
    Danielle has been in the field of child care and recreation for nearly 30 years. She received her bachelor's degree in recreation administration from Western Washington University and has an associates degree in early childhood education. Danielle is the director of Evergreen’s child care and summer programs, as well as the school’s safety and health lead administrator. When not at Evergreen, Danielle loves spending time with her husband, three beautiful daughters, their dogs and her friends.

  • Susan Smith

    Director of Admission
    Nazareth College – M.S. Ed.
    Wayne State College – B.S.
     
    Susan joined our team in 2015 after 16 years at the Webb School in Knoxville, Tennessee, where she served as director of development and also of admission and financial aid. Throughout her 30-year career in independent schools, including the Harley School in Rochester, New York and the Catherine Cook School in Chicago, Susan has worked in admissions, financial aid, marketing, website design, strategic planning, communications, alumni relations, annual giving and capital campaigns. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends—especially her grandchildren—and is an avid reader and quilter.
  • Kate Gorrissen

    Director of Development
    University of Southern California – B.A.
     
    Kate Gorrissen joined The Evergreen School in July of 2018 as our new director of development.  She has spent the last 13 years in nonprofit fundraising and the past 10 at San Francisco University High School as the associate director of development and a leader in the school's capital campaign; she has also led their $2 million annual fund. Additionally, she has extensive experience in grant writing, volunteer management, and donor engagement. Having grown up in Gig Harbor, Kate is excited to be back in the Northwest and getting reacquainted with Seattle especially the numerous museums and restaurants.
  • Kathy Baldi

    Director of Communication
    Seattle University – J.D.
    University of Washington – B.A.
     
    Kathy began working at Evergreen in 2010, serving in various roles, including director of communication, associate director of communication and executive assistant to the head of school. She also was an active parent volunteer for nine years while her daughter attended Evergreen, serving for two years as president of our Parent Association. Kathy received her law degree from Seattle University and has done appellate for the Washington State Office of the Attorney General, the Washington State Court of Appeals and the Office of the King County Prosecuting Attorney.

  • Lakaya Renfrow

    Director of Diversity
    Georgetown University – M.A.
    Michigan State University  B.A.
     
    Lakaya brings a strong background in diversity, equity and inclusion in education to The Evergreen School. Whether teaching in classroom settings, advising small groups, or developing new initiatives and programs, Lakaya's overarching focus is always on the students and about the support of social justice and diversity, with the goal of fostering a community where everyone belongs. She joined our team in 2019, coming from Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C. Lakaya looks forward to exploring the Pacific Northwest and the Seattle food scene, and to taking long naps on the weekend. 
Profound learning for the continuously curious

15201 Meridian Avenue  N. / Shoreline, WA 98133
Preschool Through Grade 8  •  Greater Seattle