On behalf of the DMCS School Board, I am pleased to share with you that after a very detailed process, the Board made an offer to one of the superintendent candidates. Mr. Cade Lambert has accepted our offer to be the next Superintendent of Des Moines Christian School effective July 1, 2016.
Our process was covered in prayer. We were praying to find the person that God had selected for us and for a unified decision among the members of the transition team and the Board. In each step of our process we saw evidence of unity.
Based upon the input of focus groups representing every aspect of DMCS, each candidate was evaluated in the areas of educational leadership, vision and strategic planning, spiritual leadership, community involvement, and communication. Our top candidates provided written materials, participated in a phone interview and visited our campus.
Mr. Lambert's professional experience, spiritual leadership, and relational skills created energy within our community, and brought him to the top of our candidate list consistently. His conversations with a variety of audiences were engaging and visionary - key elements in our search process. We believe that he is the innovative leader that will advance our mission into the future, challenging students, employees and parents to "learn, grow and go make a difference."
Mr. Lambert demonstrates a maturity of faith, and a life that reflects a consistent obedience to God's calling. His faith walk is such an integral part of his life that the spiritual leadership of the school will be a natural extension of his day to day activities. Mr. Lambert has sixteen years of experience in education, which shaped and formed a passion for excellence within an environment of continual improvement. His current role is Head of School for New Life Academy, an early education through grade twelve school in Woodbury, Minnesota. Prior to this leadership role he was an elementary principal at Des Moines Christian School. He also has experience as a classroom teacher.
During his time at New Life Academy, he has provided leadership to the school by:
- Working with a Board to establish, implement, and revise the School's first strategic plan.
- Developing a model for teaching and curriculum development which led to initiatives that include "Bring your own device" (technology) for students in grades 6-12 and creating a Makerspace Lab for students in early education - grade twelve.
- Restructuring the leadership team to better meet their established strategic goals.
- Leading a $6.0 million capital campaign and construction project that updated a school to meet the facility needs driven by growth and innovative learning.
His campus visit in early February was something out of the ordinary because it was a time to be introduced to some and a time to reconnect with others. We observed that he initiated purposeful conversations with students, employees, and parents. He was noticeably energized by the changes that have taken place at DMCS in the past five years and the potential we have to fully execute our mission in the future. Mr. Lambert sees DMCS becoming the innovative learning leader not just in the greater Des Moines area, but also across the Midwest and eventually across the nation. Our school is one of the largest ACSI schools in the nation - to be an innovative leader in ACSI is not an unreachable goal.
In our conversations with his current school and the schools surrounding, it become evident that Mr. Lambert is a respected professional leader within ACSI and with Christian and private schools in the Midwest.
The Lamberts are the parents of Macy (grade 7), Jack (grade 5), Marli (grade 2) and Will - age 4. You will have the opportunity to meet Mr. Lambert and his wife Jennifer at the True Blue Gala on April 8, 2016. An all school reception for the Lambert family will be planned; more details on this event will follow.
During the past eighteen months our Board has been reviewing the current role of the DMCS School Board and evaluating our current leadership structure. Our by-laws and policies were written when we were a much smaller school and it was necessary for the Board of Directors to take a prominent role in day to day operations. With almost 950 students and over 175 employees we are a school that needs a leader to be responsible for and manage day to day operations. We also need our superintendent to partner with the Board to develop, implement, and annually update a strategic plan that allows us to continue to impact the families and businesses in our community with our mission of "Equipping minds, nurturing hearts and impacting the world for Christ." Please join us on May 9, at our spring Association meeting. One of the agenda items at this meeting will be to present these revised by-laws to the Association for approval.
The Board would also like to thank Mr. Glenn Vos for his leadership as two year interim superintendent. We were not "standing still" during this interim period and we appreciate the counsel he provided not only in day to day operations, but also in searching for our next superintendent.
Please join the Board in thanking Mr. Vos and welcoming the Lambert family.
Mr. Tim Hall
President of the Des Moines Christian School Board