Leadership Search Team

Our global team of Senior Associates have worldwide connections in the international school community and extensive knowledge of leadership in international schools, since they have themselves served as leaders of—and now consultants to—these schools. Many also have strong ties to U.S. and British independent schools

BRENT MUTSCH

Brent Mutsch joined Search Associates as a Senior Associate in August 2017.  Shortly thereafter, he joined the Search Associates Executive team as Director of Consulting Services. In this role he will lead Search Associates in all areas of its consulting practices including, but not limited to, Leadership Searches, Educational Programs and Services, Strategic Planning, School Governance, Compensation and Benefits Review and Succession Planning.

In leading the Consulting Services Division, Brent is focused on the Search Mission which “is to partner with quality international schools and exceptional educators to serve and enrich learning worldwide.” Brent is dedicated to further developing the Consulting Services Division within Search Associates so that it delivers services that are recognized as “added value” by member schools.

Brent earned his Bachelor of Arts in History/Education at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, Master of Arts in Secondary Counseling at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, and a Doctorate in Education at the University of Northern Colorado in Greely, Colorado. His role as an Associate follows a 44-year career in education. The first 21 years of his career were spent working in public schools in Iowa and Colorado, and the final 23 years were spent providing leadership to an exceptional group of international schools. During this time, Brent served as Superintendent of the International Schools Group during a tenure from 1994-2002, Superintendent of Saudi Aramco Schools from 2002-2007, Singapore American School from 2007-2012 and the American School of Dubai from 2012-2017.

Günther Brandt

Günther Brandt

As a Senior Consultant with Search Associates, Günther consults on leadership searches, board training, governance, strategic planning, and conflict resolution. Günther has served as a Head of School for much of his career, including for the Hamburg International School (Germany); Cairo American College (Egypt); Washington International School (USA); The Putney School (USA); The Graded School (Brazil); Country Day School (Costa Rica); Frankfurt International School (Germany); The Baldwin School (Puerto Rico) ; and The Universal American School, an ESOL EDUCATION IB World School (Dubai). Günther currently serves as Education Advisor for ESOL EDUCATION and has also been a Board Member since 2013.

Over the years, Günther has provided leadership to numerous international organizations, having served as a member of the IB Heads Standing Committee; a Board Member of AISGW (Washington Area Association of Independent Schools (AISGW), the Chair of the Board of the American Schools in South America, and a member of accreditation teams of SACS and MSA. He was elected as Commissioner for MSA in 2013. Günther was born and raised in Germany, received a B.A. in History from Stanford University and obtained an M.A. and Ph.D. in History from Princeton University.

David Cope

David Cope

David heads up Search Associates in the UK and Ireland, runs the London-Spring Job Fair in April, and is a member of its Executive Management Committee. A Cambridge University graduate with a BA and MA in History, he taught History, English and Spanish for five years before becoming a headmaster. For twenty years he led three British schools in the UK and France (Dover College, the British School of Paris and Marlborough College), with a special commitment to furthering co-education and international education.

David has been an active member of the British HMC (Headmasters and Headmistresses Conference) and also of ECIS (European Council of International Schools). He served as a founding member and for several years the Treasurer of COBISEC (the association of British international schools in Europe, which has subsequently evolved into COBIS). David has also had substantial senior management experience in other fields, including British Council representation in Mexico and running the VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) programme in Zambia. Most recently, he was responsible for building up the UK branch of Ashoka, a US-based development agency supporting 3000+ social entrepreneurs through a fellowship programme in more than eighty countries worldwide.

Bridget McNamer

Bridget McNamer

Bridget began her career in international education as an English language and literature teacher at the Jakarta International School and the North Jakarta International School in Indonesia. She consulted with Search Associates founders as they got the organization up and running, and periodically over the years until she formally joined the organization in 2013. Bridget earned a B.A. in History from Harvard University and an M.A. in International Relations and Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

Bridget spent 20 years in the philanthropy sector, with a special focus on international and U.S. education reform, working for the Skoll Foundation, Gates Foundation, and Bank of America Foundation. Her professional experience has included consulting with leaders to improve the effectiveness of their organizations, including through leadership development. She has run highly competitive programs, including the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship and the Bank of America Student Leaders Program, that involved creative strategies to identify, screen, and successfully "close the deal" with candidates for coveted positions, experience which she finds directly transferable to international school leadership searches.

Julie Ryan

Julie Ryan

Julie joined Search Associates in 2014, following nearly 30 years as an elementary school principal in international and US schools. Julie began her career as a reading specialist, first at the American School of Paris and then in California, where she then served as elementary principal at two schools in the San Francisco Bay Area. Julie went on to take a position as Lower School Principal at the American School in London, where she remained for 19 years. Julie has a BA in French and Elementary Education from Florida Southern College, an MA in Reading from Northern Illinois University, and a Certificate in Educational Leadership and Administration from San Jose State University.

Since 1998, Julie has been a trainer for the Principals Training Center (the PTC). She also serves on the Executive Committee and as Commissioner for the Middle States Association of Schools and Colleges (MSA). She has been a frequent presenter at international and U.S.-based educational conferences. In 1999, she was honored as one of two international educators to receive the "National Distinguished Principal Award" from the US State Department and the National Association of Elementary School Principals.


Did You Know…?

Senior Associate Dr. Barry Drake has over 40 years' experience in administration and teaching in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, South East and East Asia.