Welcoming New Administrators to CWA

Charles Wright Academy (CWA) is proud to announce the hiring of three new Director level administrators! Denise Riordan, Hillary Ryan, and Rixa Evershed will take on senior leadership roles at CWA this spring and summer.

Denise Riordan will serve as the first-ever Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) in July 2021. Riordan has an extensive background in K-12 education and experience with leadership with equity and inclusion training. Additionally, Ms. Riordan is the co-founder and president of Engaging Across Difference, an organization that provides DEIB training, life coaching, and counseling to individuals and organizations nationally.

While the DEIB work at CWA has been in progress for many years, stewarded by a team of DEIB coordinators, the need for a director of this work has been acknowledged for some time. “Students, faculty, staff, and CWA families will greatly benefit from the addition of a senior leader who can guide our ongoing commitment to this work,” noted Susan Rice, CWA Head of School. “I am excited for her leadership in the DEIB work that will support CWA’s mission and vision, and further our ability to fully realize our newly adopted inclusion statement.”

In March, Hillary Ryan joined CWA as Communications Director. Ms. Ryan has held senior-level marketing and communications leadership positions at Tacoma Art Museum and Museum of Glass. “With her experience in nonprofit communications and her deep connections in the Tacoma-Pierce County community, Hillary brings a wealth of professional and personal knowledge to CWA,” noted Rice.

“I thrive on connecting people and building relationships to discover opportunities, create community, and produce successful outcomes. I am impressed by the warm and welcoming staff and faculty at Charles Wright Academy and I am excited about bringing a new perspective to strengthen the amazing work being done to inspire active, joyful learning,” said Ms. Ryan.

For the 2021-2022 school year, Rixa Evershed will take on the position of Director of Early Childhood Education. Most recently Ms. Evershed was the Director of Education for Nature Nurture’s Farm in Olympia, Wash. where she worked with children and youth through an open-ended, nature focused, experiential-play program to build connections to nature and animals.

“I am just thrilled to have found CWA. The idea of finding joy in the learning process is
something that I have used to guide my career. When children are given an opportunity
to pursue their interests in an authentic way, they learn to love learning. By allowing
children to inquire, create, collaborate, explore, problem solve, fail, persist and imagine
possibilities, we are creating the critical thinkers who will be the inventors of tomorrow,”
noted Evershed. We are excited as a community to welcome each of these educators into CWA!