Our Head of School

Dr. Kirk Walker, retired Headmaster of McCallie School, former GPS trustee, and past GPS parent, will serve as interim Head of School for the 2020-21 school year. 

With 33 years of school administrative experience, Walker’s nameplate has graced the headmaster’s door at several schools, including Bright School and McCallie School in Chattanooga, from which he retired, and Ensworth School in Nashville. He served as president/executive director of the Southern Association of Independent Schools until 2019 and is currently the mayor of his community, Ridgeside.

In addition to his professional experiences in independent schools, Dr. Walker also serves as a SAIS Trustee, Southern Lit Alliance Trustee, a 30-year Trustee and Sustaining Trustee for Chambliss Center for Children, and President of The Worth Foundation (2013-present), which reviews and awards grants to community-based youth development programs.

Dr. Walker received a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a Morehead Scholar and member of Phi Beta Kappa. He then earned an M.S. and Ph.D. from George Peabody College, Vanderbilt University (Nashville). 

A Chattanooga native, parent of a GPS alumna, and former GPS trustee, Walker is familiar with GPS and believes in the mission of the school and the power of an all-girls education.

Walker says his transition to leading an all-girls school began with a trip to a local bookstore and buying every book they had on raising girls. “GPS is blessed with a great faculty and a strong leadership team who know how to inspire and encourage young women,” he says.

“I am excited and honored to be part of a school community for which I have so much admiration. Both through observing my daughter’s experience as a student at GPS and through my work with the school while at McCallie and Bright, I have appreciated the breadth and quality of the program.”

His goals for the 2020-21 school year are the same as they would be for any interim head: to advance the vision of the school and to pave a smooth path for the next leader. Together with the faculty, staff, and Board of Trustees, he will be navigating the changes and workarounds for issues caused by COVID-19, a situation not present when he accepted the role.

As for the pandemic, he says, “The year ahead will have unique challenges for the nation and for all our schools, but I am hopeful that it will also be an opportunity for rediscovering the values that matter and for clearer understanding of our interdependence on each other.”

“We expect our interim year under Dr. Walker’s leadership to be one of continued progress in the important work of preparing girls for the 21st century guided by our strategic plan,” says Dr. Rebecca Stimson ’73, Chair of the GPS Board of Trustees.

Head's Council

List of 6 items.

  • Ali Gant, Chief Development Officer

    Ali Gant, Chief Development Officer

    Ali Gant joined GPS in June 2019 with two decades of development experience in higher education, independent schools, and human services. Gant holds both a bachelor’s degree in English and Master in Public Administration & Policy (MPA) from the University of Georgia. She is also a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE).
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  • Jenise Gordon, Head of Upper School

    Jenise Gordon, Head of Upper School

    After receiving a Bachelor of Science in biology from Union University (Jackson, Tennessee), Jenise Gordon went on to obtain her M.Ed. in curriculum and Instruction from Union. She earned the distinction of being Student Teacher of the Year during her senior year at Union. She also won the honor of First-Year Teacher of the Year in her first school district and Teacher of the Year twice at GPS.
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  • Lynne Macziewski, Head of Middle School

    Lynne Macziewski, Head of Middle School

    Lynne Macziewski became the Head of Middle School in 2017. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology and secondary education and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from The University of St. Thomas (Saint Paul, Minnesota). She then obtained an M.Ed. in educational leadership from the University of Minnesota (Minneapolis).
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  • Bilda Small, Chief Enrollment and Communications Officer

    Bilda Small, Chief Enrollment and Communications Officer

    After five years as GPS Director of Strategic Communications and Marketing, Bilda Acuña Small expanded her role to serve as Chief Enrollment and Communications Officer. In this position, Small oversees the admission of new students, reenrollment of existing students, and marketing communications.
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  • Jay Watts, Athletic Director

    Jay Watts, Athletic Director

    Jay Watts graduated from the College of William and Mary (Williamsburg, Virginia) with a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology. He then completed his master’s degree in education/sports administration from Georgia State University (Atlanta). Watts also holds a Certified Master Athletic Administrator certificate from the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association. He was named GPS Athletic Director in 2017.
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  • Mark Vosskamp, Chief Financial Officer

    Mark Vosskamp, Chief Financial Officer

    Mark Vosskamp holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Duke University, where he was a cum laude graduate certified to teach high school math. He then later pursued his Master of Business Administration degree (with a focus on finance) from ACC rival University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He remains a devoted Blue Devil basketball fan.
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