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School Leadership

Glyn Cowlishaw |Jeffrey Appel | Nancy Beatty | Michelle FiscusErin Harper | Eric Hedinger | Tyrone JeanLisa Knight | Kristen Kral |  Michael Magno | Todd Swartz | Lee Tappy
 
 

Dr. Glyn Cowlishaw 
Head of School
Providence Day School

Dr. Glyn Cowlishaw brings to Providence Day more than 30 years of education experience. Prior to joining PDS in 2011, he had served as headmaster, teacher and coach at Pinewood Preparatory School, an independent, coeducational, college preparatory day school in Summerville, S.C.

During his tenure, he initiated and implemented a kindergarten through 12th grade curriculum, guided the school to its inaugural Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Accreditation, doubled enrollment, supervised the construction of a campus consisting of one construction project per year, and developed and fostered a culture of giving via annual and capital funds and endowment.

Dr. Cowlishaw began his teaching career in 1980 in the United Kingdom. He taught in high school and middle school and lectured in a college prior to entering the world of international education in 1986 with a teaching position in Kuwait. He taught kindergarten through 12th grade before taking a school administration role in 1988. He served as a high school principal in Cairo, Egypt from 1991 to 1995, before taking a graduate assistant position at the University of Bath.

In 2005, Dr. Cowlishaw received the Dr. Charles Aimar Educational Leadership Award from the South Carolina Independent School Association.

Dr. Cowlishaw earned his B.Ed. from the University of Reading (UK), his M.Ed. from the University of Leeds (UK), his Ed.S. from The Citadel (S.C.) and his Ed.D. from South Carolina State University.

He also served as a Visiting Fellow at the Klingenstein Center at Columbia University (N.Y.).

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Jeffrey Appel 
Associate Head of School for Institutional Advancement 
Providence Day School

Jeffrey Appel serves as Associate Head of School for Institutional Advancement, and has been with PDS since 2011.

As a member of the school’s senior leadership team, Appel helps to shape and implement the future strategic direction of the school. He directs and oversees all aspects of philanthropy, alumni relations, constituent information, and related administrative support of these functions. In addition, Summer Programs and Campus sSafety & Security fall under his leadership.

With a master’s degree in education, for administration and supervision in higher education from Suffolk University and a bachelor’s in business administration from Curry College, Appel has more than 39 years of experience in institutional advancement, including roles as chief development officer (the Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, Pa.), associate vice president for development (Washington College in Chestertown, Md.), assistant head of school for alumni and development (Berkshire School in Sheffield, Mass.), annual fund director (Darlington School in Rome, Ga.), and alumni and parent relations director (Curry College in Milton, Mass.).

While serving as the chief advancement officer for three independent schools, Appel has been highly successful in major gift solicitation for capital, endowment, deferred and annual giving programs, and has helped each institution achieve or exceed various program and campus-wide goals, raising more than $130 million.  His experience also extends internationally, having traveled frequently to Europe and Asia in support of admissions, alumni relations, and development work. 

Appel is a member of the Council for Advancement and Support Education, the National Association of Independent Schools, and Association of Fundraising Professionals. He has served on the Board of Directors for Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, Sheffield Land Trust, and Northwest Georgia Credit Union, and was a member of Town Hill School’s Development Committee. 

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Nancy Beatty
Director of Athletics
Providence Day School 

Nancy Beatty joined PDS in 2013 and serves as the Director of Athletics.

Beatty’s responsibilities include the management of all areas of the Charger athletic program including budget, personnel, scheduling, athletic facilities, academics, public relations, Charger Club, and the overall well-being of the student-athletes and coaches. Beatty works directly with the Head of School to ensure the school’s mission and vision are echoed throughout the athletic program.

Prior to PDS, Beatty served as an educator, athletic director, and girls’ basketball coach for both Pinewood Preparatory School in Summerville, SC, and St. Vincent- St. Mary High School in Akron, OH. With 25 years of coaching experience, Beatty has led five basketball teams to state titles, earned 16 Coach of the Year honors, and assisted 20 of her former players with collegiate signings.

As an educator and administrator at Pinewood Preparatory School, Beatty was the first physical education teacher to be awarded Master Teacher in 2009 for the South Carolina Independent Schools Association (SCISA). She also was instrumental to introducing three new varsity sport programs and served as project manager for the baseball lighting project. In acknowledgment of her accomplishments, she was the recipient of the SCISA Volunteer Athletic Director in 2012.

In addition to her passion for coaching basketball, Beatty has coached volleyball, cross country, and softball teams to several district and regional titles. From 1997 to 2002, she served as a collegiate assistant women’s basketball coach at The University of Akron in Akron, OH, and The College of Charleston in Charleston, SC, where she was responsible for recruiting, team travel, and game management for both programs.

Beatty completed her Master of Education in 2006 from Southern Wesleyan University and earned her bachelor’s degree in science from Kent State University in Kent, OH.

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Michelle Fiscus head shot for leadership page

Michelle Fiscus
Executive Director of Strategic Marketing and Communication
Providence Day School

Michelle Fiscus joined Providence Day in 2023 and serves as the Executive Director of Strategic Marketing and Communication. As a member of the school’s senior leadership team, Fiscus oversees the communication and marketing strategy to all audiences, including faculty, staff, parents, students, and the public at large. Fiscus also advises senior administrators on communication best practices, as well as provides leadership during crisis communication. She is also in charge of Providence Day's overall image, including its messaging and branding, ensuring consistency across all channels.

Fiscus has over 20 years of expertise in her field, the last seven being exclusively in education, including several public North Carolina school districts and a nationwide marketing agency with service exclusively to private schools. She has consulted in multiple verticals and prides herself on understanding marketing and communication trends across different industries. Fiscus began her career with the media and worked for large broadcast companies, including Hearst Argyle, I Heart Media, and Cox Media.

She holds a bachelor's degree in Communication from Wake Forest University and proudly asserts herself as a lifelong learner. Her continuing education studies are focused on Cognitive Neuroscience, Industrial and Organizational Psychology, and Behavioral Economics.

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Erin Harper
Head of Lower School
Providence Day School

Erin Harper is the Head of Lower School, leading and managing all aspects of TK-5th grades with over 720 students. She has been in the classroom as an educator since 2005, joining Providence Day in 2007 and holding her current position since 2016.

Harper received her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Wake Forest University, where she was team captain of the women’s basketball team. She received her Master of Educational Leadership from Wingate University in 2014.  Harper received her Global Educator Certificate in 2016, with travels to South Africa and Italy. She also completed her National Association of Independent Schools Aspiring Heads Fellowship in 2019. Erin serves as a member of the Christ Lutheran Children’s Center Board. In the past, she served as the Chair of the City of Matthews Committee on Education and the Co-Chair of Providence Day School’s Vision Committee during the reaccreditation process. In 2005, she was named Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools’ New Teacher of the Year.

At Providence Day, she has played key roles in admissions and enrollment management, collaborating to increase Lower School enrollment by more than 200 students during her time as Lower School Head. She has partnered with the office of Equity and Inclusion to ensure curriculum reflects the diversity of our student body and cultivates a more inclusive community. She has redesigned the fifth grade experience to assist with the transition to Middle School and redesigned Lower School schedules to provide common planning time for teachers and common recess time for grade levels. In her current role, she has drawn on her prior experience as a Head JV Girls’ Basketball Coach, fourth grade teacher, fourth grade team leader, and Assistant Head of Lower School. She looks forward to continuing to use innovative approaches and leadership to enhance the student experience at Providence Day.

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Eric Hedinger
Head of Upper School
Providence Day School

Eric Hedinger has been Head of Upper School since 2012 after first joining Providence Day as an Upper School English teacher in 1996. 

He served on the Honor Council for 12 years, has served on the Committee for Social Responsibility, has served as Assistant Head of Upper School, and Co-Chaired the 2008 SAIS Vision Committee. Hedinger has coached both the boys and girls varsity soccer teams.

Hedinger received his Global Educator Certificate in 2010, with travels to Peru and Ireland. He was the first recipient of the Blackwell Award for Teaching Merit in 2002 and was the recipient of the Brian Eichenbrenner Master Teacher Award in 2006. Eric earned his B.S. in English from Frostburg State University, along with Secondary Teaching Certification, and his Master of Education from Winthrop University. He was a member of the Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society as well as the Sigma Tau Delta National English Honor Society.

Hedinger shares his time volunteering for the Charlotte community in many ways.  He is a leader who supports experiential education, differentiation, and innovation as core values for a learning experience inside and outside of the classroom.

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Tyrone Jean
Assistant Head of School for Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging & Chief Diversity Officer
Providence Day School

Tyrone Jean joined Providence Day School in 2021 and serves as the Assistant Head of School for Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging & Chief Diversity Officer. As a member of the school’s senior leadership team, Jean is responsible for actualizing the efforts of equity, inclusion, and belonging and weaving them throughout the tapestry of PD. Jean works with senior administrators, students, academic leaders, athletics, enrollment management, human resources, and other colleagues to ensure that each individual on our campus has access to the resources they need to flourish and experiences a sense of belonging. Jean brings a wealth of knowledge, expertise, vision, and critical perspective from the higher education space, where he served for 15 years, and has been able to effectively translate this work to independent schools. 

As a student-centered administrator, he believes strongly in being able to meet people where they are and assist them in developing a growth mindset. He is a champion of the motto “equity, inclusion, and belonging is a shared responsibility.” 

Prior to joining the PD community, he was the Assistant Dean of Students and Director at Elon University’s Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity Education. In that role he served students, faculty, and staff by providing visionary leadership, strategic thinking, and content expertise in the areas of race, ethnicity, and diversity education. 

Prior to his work at Elon, he was at Duke University, where he was the Associate Director at the Center for Multicultural Affairs, and before that, he was the Assistant Dean in Duke’s Housing, Dining, and Residential Life Office. He has also held leadership roles at Bucknell University, the University of Virginia, and Virginia Tech. He holds a bachelor’s degree in African American Studies from the University of Virginia and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Virginia Tech. 

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Lisa Knight
Assistant Head of School for Admissions and Enrollment Management
Providence Day School

Lisa Knight joined Providence Day’s leadership in summer 2019. She brings over 20 years of experience in education, with expertise in admissions, marketing, recruitment, advising, and developing programming to support success and institutional advancement.

She served most recently at Flint Hill School in Oakton, VA, a leading independent pre-K through 12th grade school, where she was Director of Admission and Financial Aid since 2014. While there she oversaw increases in enrollment and retention for their Lower, Middle, and Upper Schools. She also served as Director of Admissions for Atlanta Girls' School, an independent all girls' day school serving grades six through 12, for eight years. Prior to that she also held positions at the prestigious Miss Porter's School, an independent all-girls boarding and day school in Farmington, CT; the Westminster School in Simsbury, CT; and the State University of New York in Farmingdale.

Since 2014, she has served on the Scholar Selection Committee for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, reviewing and determining recipients of the highly competitive scholarship program. She has been affiliated with organizations including Virginia Association of Independent Schools; Enrollment Management Association; National Association of Independent Schools; National Coalition of Girls’ Schools; and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. She is excited to serve Providence Day and the Charlotte community in her role.

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Kristen Kral
Assistant Head of School for Finance and Risk Management
Providence Day School

Kristen Kral serves as the Assistant Head of School for Finance and Risk Management, and joined PDS in 2015.

In this role, Kral is charged with overseeing all risk management and ensuring the fiscal integrity of the school, as well as supervising the Facilities department. She also works closely with the Finance, Investment, and Building & Grounds committees of the Board of Trustees to advance the school’s strategic vision.

Kral brings more than 15 years of diverse financial, accounting, and operational experience to her role.  She has developed an expertise in cash-flow forecasting and profitability analyses, process re-engineering including technology enhancements, and bank refinancing. Her experience spans a wide variety of industries including several large not-for-profit businesses including a $40MM Foundation, a $10MM museum and a $6MM family support center.  Previously, Kral was a consulting manager at McGladrey, LLP and a partner with Fort Dearborn Partners.

She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Charlotte Women’s Executive Group.  Her community involvement includes the American Heart Association Circle of Red and the Women’s Impact Fund.  Kral received her Masters in Business Administration, Finance from the University of Notre Dame and a Bachelor in Accounting and Finance from Saint Mary’s College.

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Michael Magno 
Associate Head of School
Providence Day School

Michael Magno serves as the Associate Head of School at Providence Day School. As a member of the school’s senior leadership team, Magno is charged with overseeing the TK through 12th-grade curriculum, encompassing all academic programs, policies, and practices. 

Magno received his undergraduate degree from DePaul University, with a double major in Psychology and Biology, and a minor in Communication. He holds a Masters Degree in Education from Montana State-Bozeman, specializing in Performance Assessments. Magno is also working on his Ed Doctorate from Vanderbilt University with a focus on Learning, Leading, and Organizations, with projected completion in 2025-26.

He joined the PDS faculty in 2002 as a Middle School science teacher. He went on to serve as the Chair of the Middle School Honor Council, Dean of Middle School Students, Assistant Head of Middle School, and co-chaired the school’s 2014 SAIS (Southern Associations of Independent Schools) Accreditation. Magno has previously served as the Head of the Middle School and as the Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs. In 2024, he was promoted to Associate Head of School for Academic Affairs. Magno received his Global Educator Certificate in 2016 and is a founding member of the Multicultural Advisory Board.

Michael supports all academic programs on campus as well as the Student Services team, Technology, Innovation, Global Studies, the library, and our Registrar. He also leads the curriculum council, a group of TK-12 academic leaders, ensuring the implementation of the PD Passport, our portrait of a graduate. Recently, as project lead for the implementation of the IDEASXchange, Michael played a lead role with assistance from the design and construction team. He also acted as co-lead for the redesign of McMahon Fine Arts and the Brinkley Dining Hall. Michael has been a presenter on the topic of Private with Public Purpose at the local, regional, and national levels. He has been invited by the NAIS (National Association of Independent Schools) Innovation Kitchen to present and collaborate with other innovative schools. He holds the position of SAIS Accreditation chair and was recently invited to design and present at the SAIS Division Head conference.

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Mr. Todd Swartz, Assistant Head of School for Human Resources and Operations

Todd Swartz, Esq. 
Assistant Head of School for Human Resources and Operations
Providence Day School

Todd Swartz serves as Assistant Head of School for Human Resources and Operations, and has been with PDS since 2005.

As a member of the school’s senior leadership team, Swartz provides leadership and direction for strategic planning, vision and change management initiatives, project management, and policy and program development. He creates all Providence Day personnel policies and directs all human resources functions.  In addition, he supervises the Extended Day department.

Swartz has his Juris Doctorate degree (cum laude) from Boston University School of Law and a bachelor’s (cum laude) in political science from Union College.  He is also a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and a Society for Human Resources Management Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).  Swartz has more than 20 years of human resources and labor relations law experience, including roles as Special Counsel for the City of Boston’s Office of Labor Relations, human resources director for the Massachusetts College of Art and the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Swartz also serves as an adjunct professor, teaching human resources certification for Central Piedmont Community College’s Corporate and Continuing Education Program.

Swartz is a member of the Society for Human Resources Management, the Charlotte Area Society for Human Resources Management, and the Central Piedmont Community College Human Resources Management Advisory Committee. He recently completed training to become a Certified Diversity and Inclusion professional. 

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Lee Tappy
Head of Middle School
Providence Day School

As a 1994 graduate of PDS, Lee Tappy was extremely excited to return to campus in 2005 as a member of the faculty, and he recently completed his 17th year of service at PD. With 23 years of experience in education, Lee spent his first 16 years in the classroom as a 7th, 8th, and 9th grade English teacher. He also taught an upper school creative writing elective to juniors and seniors for several years. After his tenth year at PD, Lee moved into administration, and prior to becoming the Head of Middle School three years ago, he served a year as the Assistant Head while also being the Middle School Dean of Students for four years. 

Prior to becoming the Dean of Students, Lee held several other roles including being the Freshman Class Dean, representing the faculty on the Upper School Honor Council, leading the Middle School Student Council, serving alongside Pam Heacock as a SAIS (Southern Association of Independent Schools) Accreditation Co-chair, and being a middle school basketball coach. In his administrative leadership roles at PD, he helped create the "Be the Change" Freshman Class initiative on Poverty in Charlotte and implemented Middle School Student-Led Conferences and Meet the Teacher Day in Middle School. 

He is currently working towards his Masters in Educational Leadership and Administration at Saint Joseph's University, and earned his undergraduate degree with a major in English and a minor in Psychology from Appalachian State University. Married to his wife Robin for 18 years, he is the proud parent of two PD 8th graders. He is passionate about our community, committed to our mission, and driven by our responsibility to our students and their families to provide an exceptional education in a safe and caring environment, while also challenging them to push themselves and explore new opportunities and experiences. In his spare time, Lee loves spending time with his family, traveling, reading, and playing the guitar.

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