At The Country School we are proud of our alumni. Our former students, along with former faculty, administration, staff, and parents, have made The Country School what it is today, and we love to keep in touch with them!
The Country School has an active Alumni Association which oversees reunion planning, alumni communications, and other activities involving former students. The Alumni Association also identifies and nominates the recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award.
Ally Picard '07, a registered nurse specializing in pediatric psychiatry who is studying for her doctorate at Columbia University
Teachers at The Country School really cared, and it wasn't just caring about test scores. Everyone had their own thing, and that was okay. I’m learning in psychiatry that every kid is in a different place. Country School teachers taught to where we were individually. I’m very lucky to have had that. The Country School was so ahead of its time.
Harry Bradford ’00, deputy editorial director for The New York Times’ T Brand Studios
I largely credit The Country School for cultivating the desire to explore, discover, and continue to learn from an early age. It was an education that provided the foundation to keep looking toward the goal — much like the Times’ mission itself — of better understanding the world we live in.
Jake Gadon ’08, weekend sports anchor at KOAA5 in Colorado Springs, CO, former sports director and anchor at CBS7-KOSA in Odessa, TX
Combine the the confidence to get out there and the knowledge that it’s okay to fail — and I know I wouldn’t be where I am today: a sports anchor at a local television station, in a position where I am in front of a camera, seen in households all over West Texas — without The Country School.
Kat Lauer ’06, development specialist at Motion Picture & Television Fund, former director of UCLA Athletics’ Bruin Varsity Club
At The Country School, my coaches, my advisors, everyone there had my best interests at heart and I didn’t feel like just another person in the crowd. Those are some of my most cherished memories. It’s rare to say when you’re in Middle School that you have that.
Marissa Irwin ’05, founder of her own jewelry company, Marissa Irwin Designs, and former associate in business strategy and management at BlackRock in London
You should never be afraid to be yourself, and part of being yourself is pursuing what you love. Country School created an environment where students could be whoever they wanted to be and never had to worry about being judged for it.
Planting Seeds and Watching them Sprout: Alumni Reunion 2022 Some 60 alumni, including two from the 1970s, three from the 1980s, and 50+ from the 2000s, returned to campus for our traditional Fall Alumni Reunion. As always, it was a festive occasion, as old friends caught up with classmates, teachers and Reading Buddies, soccer players of all ages played pickup on the soccer field, and the school officially honored Kim Tobin King '85, Connecticut Teacher of the Year, with the 2022 Distinguished Alumni Award.
The day was a celebration of community, education, and the student-teacher bond. In her speech, Ms. King, now an art teacher in Mansfield, talked about the seeds her Country School teachers had planted in her all those years ago. Arriving on campus as a shy, quiet 6th Grader who was afraid of making mistakes, Ms. King said her teachers believed in her and saw her potential. "Like great teachers do, the faculty of the Country School poured into me," she said. "They encouraged me to inform my own thoughts, to take risks, to value my own ideas. The Country School is where I had art, music, PE, library, and science for the very first time. It is where this incredibly shy person participated in poetry contests, school plays, and talent shows.
"Now I am not saying that the growth happened overnight," she continued. "In fact, by the time I graduated from The Country School I was most often described as quiet or mild. I actually found a copy of what was said at my 8th Grade graduation. But upon closer reading, you’ll start to see the seeds: Leader in her class. Sees value in the work of others and is generous with her praise. Aggressive streak. Someone whom the world relies on to solve its problems or listen to its troubles. Sounds like my teachers knew my potential long before I had any inkling because if you had asked me to describe myself at that time I would have said: Afraid of change. Confused. Unsure of what I want to be.
"So if you’re feeling unsure of yourself I hope you can find some comfort in knowing your teachers see you. They see your gifts, your unique talents, your genius. They see your ability to lead and to innovate and to help. Trust that they want you to succeed, not only in school but in life. The beauty of a place like The Country School is that you’re more than just a test score or a data point. Every student here matters. You contribute something only you can bring to this beautiful community of learning."
We are so grateful Ms. King came to this community as a student back in 1982 and returned 40 years later to share her learning. Likewise, we are grateful to the 59 other alums who returned to campus, as we once again experienced what each of them contributes to this "beautiful community of learning." It was truly a homecoming, filled with smiles, laughter, friendship, and memories. As Mrs. Richar said repeatedly that day, echoing the sentiments of many, "Alumni Day is my favorite day of the year!"
341 Opening Hill Road, Madison, CT 06443 P. 203-421-3113 | F. 203-421-4390 | Health Office F. 860-469-2550
Founded in 1955, The Country School is a coeducational, independent school serving students in PreSchool-Grade 8. The Country School is committed to active, hands-on learning and a vigorous curriculum that engages the whole child.