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Manlius Pebble Hill School selects new leader

MANLIUS, N.Y. — Manlius Pebble Hill School (MPH) announced that its board of trustees has unanimously approved David J. McCusker, Jr. as its next head of school, effective July 1.

He will be replacing Jim Dunaway, who announced last June that he would be retiring at end of the 2018-2019 school year, at the age of 70.

McCusker was previously head of school at the Cardigan Mountain School, where he served for nine years before taking on his current position as director of advancement for school year abroad.

During his time at Cardigan Mountain, McCusker “led the school through significant enrollment growth, initiated innovative academic programs, expanded professional development opportunities for faculty and staff, and enhanced financial stability, including completion of a $50 million capital campaign, the largest in the school’s history,” according to an MPH news release. Before Cardigan, McCusker served as director of development for two independent schools, St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire and The Park School in Massachusetts.

McCusker is a graduate of two of the schools he has worked at — Cardigan Mountain and St. Paul’s. And, he received a bachelor’s degree in history from Dartmouth College.

Dunaway applauded McCusker’s appointment. “While I’ll be retiring in June, I have a big stake in the success of the next head of school. The selection of Dave McCusker gives me great confidence that the school will continue on the upward trajectory we have seen over the last several years. His experience, wisdom, commitment to the education of young people, and down-to-earth warmth — all predict his success as head of MPH. I could not be more pleased with his selection.”

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