Kelli Clark
Kelli Clark

St. Mary's Academy has appointed Kelli Clark as the school's new principal. Clark, who most recently served as program director and principal of Open Meadow High School, will assume leadership of St. Mary's curricular and co-curricular programs this summer. She replaces Patricia Barr, who served as principal for 12 years and prior to that as a member of the English department.

"We've been blessed to have had such a dedicated, talented principal in Pat Barr, who leaves the school in a very strong position. We feel fortunate to have found in Kelli Clark an inspirational leader who embraces the unique charism and mission of all-female, Catholic education," said Christina Friedhoff, St. Mary's Academy president.

St. Mary's has moved recently to expand the campus and incorporate technology.

Clark has spent 16 years in education. She holds a master of arts in teaching from Lewis & Clark College. Previous appointments include adjunct faculty at Marylhurst University in the Graduate School of Education, assistant principal at Rowe Middle School and teaching posts at Sellwood and Kraxberger middle schools.

Clark says she was drawn to St. Mary's for its mission, its reputation for excellence, and to the charism of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, the school's founding religious order.

"Helping to support the Sisters' legacy and vision of combining excellence in education with the promotion of social justice in developing young women as future leaders is a phenomenal opportunity," Clark said. "It's very inspiring and humbling to be asked to be part of that tradition and future."

Former colleagues praise Clark for an inquisitive mind, a good grasp of teaching, plus enthusiasm and compassion.