Tom Dillow

P’21, ’22, ’26, Head of School

Tom, his wife Deirdre, and his four sons, Finn, Ronan, Aidan, and Tadhg joined the KO community in July 2018 from Shorecrest Preparatory School in St. Petersburg, Florida, where he was the Assistant Head of School and Head of the Upper School. Prior to his tenure at Shorecrest, Tom held a number of positions of increasing responsibility at the Lawrenceville School. First and foremost, a teacher during his time at Lawrenceville, he also served as the head of one of the residence houses, was the founding Director of Lawrenceville’s highly regarded summer program, and redesigned the Humanities curriculum. A lifelong educator and scholar, Tom holds his undergraduate degree in Government and History from Georgetown University and a Master’s degree in International and European Politics from the University of Edinburgh.

In his educational philosophy statement, Tom stated, “The end goal for our students is to create life-long learners who are respectful of others, capable of challenging their prior assumptions when confronted with better evidence to the contrary, yet steadfast when it comes to tackling a problem that seems insurmountable. They should be wary of the treacherous effects of entitlement and recognize that success should not be measured by how much they acquire or consume, but the extent to which they give back to their communities and make a difference.”

Tom attended high school in Austria and Germany. Spurred by his international background, his interest in history, government, and international affairs led him to Georgetown University. A true

scholar-athlete, Tom was also a stand-out soccer player at Georgetown. After college, Tom was drawn to a career in teaching and became a faculty member at The McCallie School. This began a career spanning more than two decades in teaching, coaching, and academic leadership at various schools, giving him exposure to diverse cultures and experiences.

During his tenure at Shorecrest, Tom spearheaded several initiatives, including implementing a new academic schedule that meets the students’ brain-based learning and social-emotional health needs, and numerous project-based learning initiatives in the Upper School. In addition, Tom created and taught senior interdisciplinary electives (Sub-Saharan Africa and Tribalism: Us vs.Them) and chaperoned service learning trips to Haiti, Peru, and Argentina.