Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Board


"Words and promises are not enough;
real change and real progress have to be our goals.
We are committed to moving GFS to be proactively
anti-racist, acknowledging racism and inequities
where they exist,
and taking action to address them"

-Chris Hughes
Message to the GFS COMMUNITY

In June 2020, Garrison Forest School created the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory Board. Made up of GFS faculty and staff members from across divisions and offices, as well as members of the GFS Board of Trustees, the role of the Advisory Board is to provide guidance and recommendations to the school in its ongoing efforts to be proactively anti-racist and inclusive. 


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Work at GFS: Vision Statement

At Garrison Forest School, the building and nurturing of an inclusive, antiracist campus is a vital component of our community and our Core Values. Our work to promote diversity, equity and inclusion is integral to every aspect of school life, and is essential to ensure that our campus is a place where all students feel welcomed, encouraged, supported and heard. As a key focus across our campus, diversity, equity and inclusion work at GFS examines our school-wide protocols, policies, practices and infrastructure with the goal of developing action plans that result in real and measurable progress.

This work is guided by three key pillars:

  • Community Life and Care
  • Pedagogy and Curriculum
  • Recruitment, Retention and Support

Key Pillars and Initiatives

Announcements from the DEI Advisory Board

DEI Resources for Parents and Students

Along with the specific initiatives outlined above, the Office of Community Life and Inclusion will support students, parents and faculty and staff by providing resources to help facilitate courageous conversations and develop age-appropriate ways to engage students in these efforts. Similar resources have been provided to our faculty and staff. 

Our goal in hosting listening sessions is to hear input and experiences from all of our community members in a safe space. If you would prefer to submit your experience via this anonymous form, please click below: 


Advisory Board Members

Chris Hughes (co-chair), Head of School
Carolyn Lewis (co-chair), Director of Community Life and Inclusion
Crystal Lee Alston '96, GFS Board of Trustee Member
Lauren Misera Anderson '02, Middle School Dean of Students
Jim Beam, Upper School Mathematics Teacher and Faculty Liaison to the Board of Trustees
Randy Beckford, Upper School Dean of Students
Shondra Cowling, Lower School Counselor
Meisha Dockett, Human Resources Manager
Jazmin Greene, Assistant Director of Admission
Vanessa Griffin, Executive Assistant to the Head of School
Kate Gugerty, Director of Community Engagement
Gail Hutton, Head of the Lower Division
Lisa Fleck, Director of Counseling
Gretta Gordy Gardner '86, GFS Board of Trustee Member
Reema Khanchandani, Head of the Upper School
Heather Malone-Wolf, Director of Dance
Shelly Placek, Director of Communications and Marketing
Shannon Schmidt, Head of the Middle School
Bryna Stoute, Preschool Teacher
Aminah Wells, Upper School Counselor