After 47 years of service, Assistant Head of School Harry Baetjer has decided to retire from Tower Hill at the end of this academic year. Harry was hired in September 1970 to teach history in the Middle School, and he served Tower Hill in myriad roles over nearly five decades. Harry truly bleeds green and white, and there are not many individuals who have served a school with such loyalty for this length of time!
During his years at Tower Hill, Harry taught both Middle and Upper School history; coached football, basketball and baseball; and served as Upper School Head, Assistant Head, Interim Head and Head of School. He was presented with Tower Hill's Founders' Achievement Award in the fall of 2015. He has attended countless alumni receptions and knows alumni across the decades, always remembering a story about any given alum as a student. Most recently, Harry has coordinated the hiring process schoolwide. He is able to tell the Tower Hill story in a way that endears some of the most qualified candidates to Tower Hill, helping them truly understand what is so unique about our school community.
There are those rare individuals in schools who embody perfectly the ethos of that particular school. Harry is such a person for Tower Hill. His legacy will live on at Tower Hill in so many ways. Harry is through and through a school person, and his loyalty to this wonderful school runs deep. His own children — Patrick ‘99, Katharine ‘02 and Sean ‘05 — are graduates of Tower Hill, and his love of storytelling, not only about his own children, but about so many others, is one of his many great gifts. Harry enjoys the human aspect of schools, and he understands that Tower Hill is indeed a close-knit community. He cares about students and teachers and understands what motivates us as a school.
We invite parents, students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends to participate in a collection of "Baetjer Bravos," whereby we can all share anecdotes, memories or words of appreciation that we will present to Harry. Please share your Baetjer Bravos via this link
. We will honor Harry this spring as he retires and have already told him that we will not let him escape continued celebration and appreciation, which will be incorporated into Homecoming 2017. Stay tuned for updates in the fall.
In the meantime, as a way of honoring Harry, we are establishing the Baetjer Fund for Teaching at Tower Hill
, which will support faculty through professional development and stipended summer opportunities.
We are hopeful that Harry will serve on our Centennial Committee. We hope he will also return often to cheer on the green and white, and who knows when we might need to call on him to work the chains at a football game! Please join me in wishing Harry and his wife Caryl a wonderful next chapter in retirement; this school is indebted to Harry for his leadership, loyalty and love of all that is Tower Hill.