The President's Circle Celebration is held each year as a festive thank you to significant donors to the school.
This year, Board of Trustees President Alfred M. Randolph Jr. '80 stepped to the podium with the customary thanks for the steadfast support that those in attendance had demonstrated for the school. “We all share tremendous pride in this place," he said, “and thankfully, that pride manifests itself in many ways, including the incredible volunteer work of so many, along with your amazing financial support."
He then made a surprise announcement: There had been a “secret vote" to choose “the inaugural Queen of the President's Circle Celebration" -- a designation that would be bestowed with a sash and a tiara. Before revealing that the inaugural winner was Mrs. Beth Manning, the wife of Headmaster Dennis Manning, Mr. Randolph enumerated many ways that she has served the school:
- She has been an admissions ambassador and tour guide.
- She has served on multiple Field Day committees, including NA Gourmet, Decorations, the Auction, and the creation of Tea Towels (21 years). She will be serving as Field Day Co-Chair with Katherine Wynne for Field Day 2023.
- While Headmaster Manning is renowned for his wordsmithing, Mrs. Manning serves as “proofreader in chief," and Mr. Randolph noted, “Dennis rarely makes any changes after she has reviewed something."
- She constantly looks for thoughtful ways to make members of the Bulldog family feel appreciated, and she has hosted countless Board, donor, and student events in her home, always “with the greatest taste and graciousness." Mr. Randolph noted that the President's Circle Celebration is her signature event, and it is planned with incredible attention to detail, as she is “always mindful of current entertaining trends."
- She has quietly tutored and mentored struggling students, “instilling in them the academic confidence they need to succeed. Those students are devoted to her."
Mr. Randolph noted that her work as an advisor and confidant to her husband has been integral to his success; Headmaster Manning has announced that he will retire in June 2023, after 22 years at the helm of the school. “She has served this institution in ways both seen and unseen, never seeking the limelight for her important work, but always putting the institution first," Mr. Randolph said. “Her service has had a remarkable impact on this school."