This talk and discussion will focus on the challenges and opportunities that have shaped the founding of a diverse school community in the center of the United States. The Walton Family Foundation engaged Clayton Marsh in 2016 to lead the founding of the first independent school for grades 6-12 in Northwest Arkansas, one of the most rapidly developing regions in the United States. Named in honor of Louise Thaden, a pioneering American aviator, Thaden School opened in the fall of 2017 and has grown rapidly on the strength of its well-resourced financial assistance program, which makes the cost of a Thaden education affordable for all families in the region, and the innovative design of its curriculum and campus.

Clayton Marsh is the Founding Head of the Thaden School ( ).  Prior to his appointment at the Thaden School, Dr. Marsh served as Deputy Dean of the College at Princeton University where he focused on undergraduate academic programs.  He continues to serve as Trustee of the Seeger Hellenic Fund supporting Princeton’s Seeger Center for Hellenic Studies. Dr. Marsh started his career in education at The Lawrenceville School, a boarding school near Princeton. He also practiced law for several years in New York City and served as University Counsel at Princeton for 10 years. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Princeton, a doctorate in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University, and a law degree from the University of Michigan. 

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