Jane Foley Fried, of New York City, a member of the Class of 1983, has been honored by the Bowdoin College Alumni Council with the 2013 Distinguished Educator Award, to be presented June 1 during Reunion Convocation.
The Distinguished Educator Award was established in 1964 to recognize outstanding achievement in education (teaching or administration) by a Bowdoin alumnus or alumna in any field and at any level of education.
“Jane’s outstanding service and leadership over the past 30 years, including her recent appointment as Brearley’s Head of School, is most deserving of this honor,” says Alumni Council Awards Committee Chair Dan Hart ’95.
A dedicated educator with more than 27 years of experience in independent schools, Fried was named Head of School at The Brearley School on Manhattan’s Upper East Side in December 2011 and assumed her responsibilities at the K–12 girls’ school on July 1, 2012.
“At the start of my tenure at Brearley, I am tremendously honored to receive this award from my alma mater,” Fried says.
“In many ways my educational journey began at Bowdoin; its extraordinary curriculum, small classes and mentorship of dedicated faculty introduced me to a whole new way of learning and laid the groundwork for a career in education. My experiences in college inspired me to focus professionally on areas about which I am passionate — girls’ education and leadership, as well as access and support for underrepresented students. I have been fortunate to participate in one of the most significant periods of change in independent education, which I would describe as a shift toward openness and engagement in national and global issues. Like Bowdoin, independent schools increasingly see the need to build communities that reflect the country and the world so that they can better prepare their students to live a life of purpose.”
Previously, Fried had worked at Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., where she had held leadership positions since 1991, most recently as the dean of admission and assistant head for enrollment, research and planning. Fried collaborated with faculty, administrators, staff, students, parents and trustees in areas that included the composition of the student body, student achievement and support, institutional research, budget and facilities.
A history and philosophy major, Fried left Bowdoin to embark on a career that would begin as a history instructor, house counselor and coach at Suffield Academy in Connecticut.
She would later join the faculty at the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, Mass., where her focus turned to admissions and financial aid and residential life.
In 2002, Fried earned a master’s degree from Tufts University, writing her thesis on girls’ perceptions of leadership. Other areas of research and interest include the performance of underrepresented students of color and girls in math and science, the impact of independent school education on the lives of alumni, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. An avid hiker, skier and snowshoer, Fried serves on the board of the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), an organization that offers students of all ages wilderness courses and in the process teaches outdoor skills, leadership and environmental ethics.