Head of School Search

Leigh Toomey to serve as St. Bernard Academy’s next Head of School

St. Bernard Academy’s Board of Trust has selected Leigh Toomey as the next Head of School, beginning July 1, 2022. Her appointment was made following a nationwide search. 

Leigh brings to SBA strong experience as an academic administrator coupled with a background in business management. She currently serves as the Middle School director at Frederica Academy in St. Simons Island, Georgia.

“During the search process, it quickly become clear that Leigh is the leader we need to build upon SBA’s already strong foundation of excellence and guide us forward,” said Brigid Carpenter, president of SBA’s Board of Trust. “With the enthusiastic recommendation of our search committee and overwhelmingly positive feedback from the parents, faculty, staff and students she met, the board unanimously chose Leigh to be our next head of school. We are confident that her collaborative leadership skills alongside her strong Catholic identity and personal commitment to nurturing students spiritually, personally and academically will benefit our entire school community.” 

“I am thrilled and humbled to be named St. Bernard Academy’s next Head of School,” said Leigh. “From the moment we stepped onto campus my husband Michael and I felt the warmth of hospitality and the conviction of the school’s mission-driven purpose. I am proud to join the SBA family and am confident that together with faculty, staff, students and families we will continue to ensure SBA sets, meets and exceeds the high aspirations we hold for it.” 

Leigh will succeed Chuck Sabo, who will retire at the end of this academic year following 15 years leading SBA. As a result of Sabo’s leadership, SBA looks to the future with record enrollment, expanded and upgraded facilities and solid financial standing that position the school for continued success. 

Meet Leigh Toomey

Leigh Toomey offers a unique combination of educational experiences coupled with a twenty-year background in small business management. She previously served as the Assistant Head of School at The Village School of North Bennington in Vermont, a prek-6 independent school, where she was responsible for development, admissions, and day-to-day operations. She currently serves as the Middle School Director, 5th through 8th grade, at Frederica Academy located on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

Although she holds the title of Middle School Director, she is responsible for many school-wide initiatives outside of her divisional duties. These include serving as Interim Fine Arts Director for grades Pre-K through 12, creating and implementing a school-wide Social and Emotional Learning curriculum, being a sitting member of the Board of Trustees Strategic Planning, Finance, and Admissions Committees, completing a two-year appointment as the reaccreditation chair, and is an inaugural member of the Justice Equity Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) group. Prior to her career in education, she was in sales and marketing, owned for-profit businesses and founded a not-for-profit that assists underprivileged children in her community. Leigh has also served on community boards throughout her career.

As a committed life-long learner, Leigh holds a Master of Advanced Studies in Educational Administration, a Master of Science in Teaching, a Master of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Public Communications, and is currently pursuing a Doctor of Education from Johns Hopkins University with an emphasis on entrepreneurial leadership through a social justice lens. Leigh also holds New York State teaching certifications in Elementary Education (Grades 1-6), Social Studies (Grades 7-12), Business and Marketing (Grades 7-12), Coordinator for Work-Based Learning Career Development (Grades 11-12), and continues to teach classes yearly. She also was recently awarded the Georgia Thespian Society Administrator of the Year award for 2021.

Leigh and her husband, Michael, have two children. Her daughter, Raegan, a semi-professional ice dancer that resides in New York and her son, Sean, who is a sophomore at Brown University. In her free time, she enjoys running a mentoring group for young girls in her community on self-advocacy and speaking at women's groups and conferences on the topic. She also loves spending time with her family and friends. 


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