A Catholic, independent, college preparatory school for girls, Grades 1-12, with a co-educational Early Childhood Program, infant through Kindergarten age.


stone Ridge News

Girls Scout Troop Earns Aviation Badge

The Stone Ridge Grade 5 Girl Scout troop started the summer off with an exciting trip to Joint Base Andrews, where they earned their aviation badge. The girls learned about aeronautical charts, talked to the weather shop, visited the Federal Aviation Administration air traffic control tower, watched military airplanes—mostly tankers and cargo aircraft—land and take off, and visited the 121st Fighter Squadron where they got to sit in the ejection seat trainer cockpit and tour an F16 up close with its pilot Lt. Col. Todd Gibson.

What a great way to kick-off the summer!

Aeronautical charts

Dr. Jeannie Downey-Vanover Presented For God and Youth Award

For her work as Director of Music Ministry for Youth at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, the Archdiocese of Washington Office of Youth Ministry presented the For God and Youth Award to Dr. Jeannie Downey-Vanover, Assistant Head of Upper School. The award recognizes adults in youth ministry who have faithfully lived out their call of service, exemplified Christian examples and dedicated service to the Church and is a positive role model to youth.

Of Dr. Vanover's service Sherry Moitoza, Director of Social Concerns at St. Rose of Lima says, "For many years Dr. Vanover has been a true example of paying attention to young people by inviting, instructing, and mentoring them to lead the parish in liturgical music. Children, teens, and parents learn by her example what it means to serve the Church. Jeanne models discipleship by selflessly sharing her love of the faith, her vocation to teach, and the gift of her time. Her gift of mentoring empowers them to sing more than notes on a page by starting first with prayer. They in turn inspire us to lift our hearts and our voices to God. Young people learn to take risks and lead, knowing that they are well prepared and supported by the entire community. The youth of Saint Rose of Lima move all of us, through song, to deepen our communion as the Body of Christ. We give thanks to God for Jeannie's gift of leadership that inspires all parishioners and visitors to recognize the Lord in our midst."

In addition to her role as Assistant Head of the Upper School, Dr. Vanover is the Chair of the World Language Department and teaches AP Spanish Literature.

Congratulations, Dr. Vanover.

A Gator On the Water

Madeline Fontana '21 has become Stone Ridge’s first ever competitive rower. Since her start of crew this spring, Madeline has represented Stone Ridge in several regattas as a member of the Montgomery Boat Club. Stone Ridge offers the opportunity for girls interested in rowing to practice and compete with the Montgomery Boat Club, with boats comprised of girls from several area schools. The regattas that Madeline competed in include the Baltimore City Championships, where her 4+ women’s boat finished first, resulting in Madeline’s first medal in her first season of crew for Stone Ridge. 

Madeline’s hard work also enabled her to qualify and be selected by the Coaches to compete with a limited squad, given the level of competition at the regional level at the Mid-Atlantics (a qualifier for Youth Nationals) in Princeton, New Jersey with her 4+ boat finishing an impressive fourth place racing at the highest level in our region the first day.

Crews are selected on the basis of rowers’ physical ability, technical ability and attitude, which includes effort and attendance.

Congratulations, Madeline! #Gatorstrong


Fourth Academics Garner Knowledge and Experience from a Range of Internships

Gaining invaluable experience in the real world, our Fourth Academics just wrapped up their two-week internships at varying organizations in the DC metropolitan area. Below, we highlight a few students and their impressions of their experiences while interning. We are so grateful to all the sponsors who hosted our student interns.

Shira Nash ' 19 - Plan USA International
"My internship at Plan USA International was not only informative, but eye-opening and inspiring. This organization's mission is to 'strive for a just world that advances children's rights and equality for girls' and Plan is undoubtedly doing that work. Plan has established influential programs and partnerships in over 70 developing countries, all focusing on tackling some of the worlds most challenging issues surrounding childhood poverty. As an intern, I mostly assisted with the logistical aspects of one of Plan's programs, the Youth Leadership Academy. To prepare for this week-long program in July, I constructed workshops and activities for the students, and attended meetings and international webinars. Through truly immersing myself on both the planning and action steps to bring a program to life, I have gained a greater appreciation for the hard but necessary work that nonprofits do to change the world. Even though I was only at Plan for a week, I feel that I contributed to a program that can change the lives of many."

Sofia Rojas '19 - FasterCures
"My internship with FasterCures could be summed up with two words: awe inspiring. The nonprofit is a subsection of the larger Milken Institute which is multifaceted economic think tank that hosts conferences and funds research for policy issues around the country and the world. FasterCures follows drug pipelines throughout each phase of getting authorized and released to the market where they can be bought by consumers. While working with the organization, the veil over the healthcare system fell and I saw the system for what it really was: broken. The day to day work varied from busy work such as putting names and data into an excel document to doing foundational research for the growth of a new sector of the organization to sitting in on meetings and conference calls. I was also given the opportunity to talk to every member of the FasterCures team about their paths to how they found their way into healthcare and subsequently, FasterCures. Each member demonstrated for me how your path can start from anywhere and end in a completely different area than you had intended."

Nadine Daboub/ Vitamin Sea Design
"For my internship I worked with Vitamin Sea Design, a company that customizes items such as blankets, yoga mats, towels, bags and much more. I learned a lot about graphic design and how long it takes to make a perfect individualized order. I learned about profit margins and the reasoning behind them. I was able to engage in setting up the website and adding new products that I had designed, it was amazing to see something that I had created on her website. Overall I had an amazing experience and wouldn't change any of it!"

Sophie Thompson/ Sibley Memorial Hospital
"I spent my internship observing Dr. Armine Smith and her co-worker Dr. Justin Banabdallah in Sibley Hospital's Urology Clinic. I was able to sit in on patient consults, see various small procedures, and learn how to treat ailments, such as pancreatic cancer and kidney stones. Through my internship, I was able to learn a lot about the ins and outs of compassionate patient care and treatment. I now have a better understanding of the large responsibility urologists have to keep the members of their community healthy and a greater passion for the field of medicine."

Abby at American UniversityAbby Romano '19 - The American University Athletics Department
"For my internship, I decided to combine my love of sports and interest in business, as I worked as an intern in the Athletics Department at American University. I worked with Ms. Josephine Harrington, Deputy Director of Athletics, who helped me set up interviews with multiple people in the office so I could learn about all of the different positions in the department. Among others, I met with the Senior Associate Director of Athletics, the Director of Recreational Sports, and the Controller for the university. I was surprised at the diversity of positions available and loved to hear each person's stories as how they ended up at their respective position. In addition to speaking with multiple people in the office, Ms. Harrington gave me different "projects" to work on each day which included researching athletic department statistics from Patriot League schools and organizing it in Google sheets, making graphs to organize the data, inputting student athlete financial aid data, team travel information, and other important data into spreadsheets. From this experience, I have learned that I enjoy working in college athletics and will pursue this next year in college."

Lily Gee/ The Association of Fish and Wildlife Services/ AWFA
"I spent my internship at AWFA, a governmental NGO who mitigates between federal and state agencies in terms of conservation. AWFA is a large agency who works closely with the Department of the Interior, The U.S Fish and Wildlife Services, Canada, Mexico, NGOs, and community organizations across America. During my time there, I sat in on conference calls, staff meetings, interviewed in state and out of state employees, attended a senate hearing, and primarily wrote articles and did research for various AFWA newsletters and social media accounts. My writing is published in a few letters coming out in June, as a wrote an article on the IBPES Report on Biodiversity that was debated in the senate hearing I'd attended. Overall, the most valuable experience I got out of AWFA was talking to the vast array of people in the office because they all work in the conservation field but in entirely different ways. Through getting to know such an array, I learned more about how to apply an environmental science degree in varied career paths. In addition, I learned that conservation is intrinsically interdisciplinary, so it won't be difficult to combine my passions if I decide to work in the conservation sector. Hearing my coworkers talk about their paths to AWFA gave me the confidence to try many different things in college, and most importantly, keep an open mind to everything."

Senior Audrey Cibel's Photographs on Exhibit

If you're in DC, be sure to drop by Nick's Riverside Grill to see Audrey Cibel's '19 gorgeous photography exhibit entitled "WE."

Exhibit Dates: May 29-June 7
Location: Nick's Riverside Grill 3050 K St NW, Washington, DC 20007 Washington DC

This series of photos titled "WE" is a social commentary about race and colorism. The titles emphasize a gain in ownership of themselves and their identities using pronouns. The emphasis on touch between a diverse range of skins, bodies, and hair, creates a space where they can coexist as one body. Of her work, Audrey explains, "My hope is for the viewers to re-evaluate their presumptions and confront implicit biases within themselves and their relationships."

Art Exhibit

Audrey Cibel '19, Mr. McClusky, Head of Upper School

Students Participate in Social Entrepreneurship Summit

Upper School Science Teacher Kathleen Flood took Cecelia Gadina '19 and Madeline Fontana '21 to a Social Entrepreneurship Summit at Saint Stephens and Saint Agnes School in April. The event was an empowering one-day summit for high school students throughout the Washington D.C. metropolitan area who are interested in brainstorming, creating, or expanding a social impact business or nonprofit organization.

Students who attended the summit took part in an enriching experience that helped them: define their core values and passions for social change; develop personalized blueprints for sustainable leadership; receive direct mentoring from experienced social entrepreneurs, business coaches, and civic leaders; explore tangible strategies and build community networks for translating their social impact vision into sustainable practice.

Social Entreprenuership Summit

26th Annual Golf & Tennis Classic a Success

The Stone Ridge 26th Annual Golf & Tennis Classic, held last Friday at Argyle Country Club, was a wonderful success. All who attended enjoyed a beautiful day filled with friendly competition, camaraderie, and most important, an enormous support for Stone Ridge Athletics.

In total, there were 127 golfers and tennis players, including two students from the SR Golf Team and four students from the SR Tennis Team. This year's Classic raised a whopping $70,000 for Stone Ridge Athletics! Thank you to our sponsors and all who came out to show their support.

This year's tennis tournament winner was Genie Strong. The Harkins Award, awarded to a person in the community with standout dedication to Stone Ridge Athletics, went to outgoing Director of Athletics Jason McGhee for his outstanding leadership and service to the Sacred Heart mission. 

Golf Results

First Place - Gross
Rick Hyde
Martin Payne
Drew Hyde
Lee Hall

First Place - Net
Patrick Conway
Tim Reardon
Stephen Maturo
Tom Muldoon

Second Place - Net
Rich Vogel
Susan Castellan
Mark Cecil
Ed Mackowiak

Third Place - net
Brian Porto
Ryan Angier
Peter Keny
Dan Healey

Closest to pin: Chris Trump and Mary O'Connor
Longe drive: Jason Meisch and Maureen Dolan

Golf Classic

Tennis Classic

See more photos

Seniors Share their STEAM Knowledge

Several Fourth Academic students presented their STEAM Certificate Portfolios on April 25 to over 40 curious underclassmen. Catherine Heming '19, Zoe Barnette '19, Addi Poole '19, Jillian Perry '19, Beyer Bullard '19, Nia Williams '19 and Hannah Joseph '19 shared their digital snapshots of their work in various STEAM related endeavors. Underclassmen heard about research internships, STEAM independent projects, environmental stewardship, designing and building in a maker space, science competitions and more. The girls interested in the STEAM Certificate Program then mingled and asked questions of the student presenters while enjoying a pizza lunch. The Fourth Academic students shared their passion and joy to those interested in the program.

Check out their impressive portfolios.
Zoe Barnette
Beyer Bullard
Catherine Heming
Hannah Joseph
Jillian Perry
Nia Williams
Addi Poole

Nia, Hannah, Zoe, Jillian, Addison, Catherine and Beyer

Sofia Rojas '19 Participates in Sustainability Panel Discussion

Kudos to Sofia Rojas '19 for her excellent and informative contribution to a panel discussion on sustainability, the environment and ways through which we can all contribute to making the world a better place. The discussion was preceded by a concert by Sandbox Percussion, a New York City based percussion quartet, and the New Orchestra of Washington featuring Viet Cuong's percussion concerto, "Re(new)al", which featured music celebrating nature and renewable energy.

Neil Weston, Cross Divisional Chorus Teacher at Stone Ridge, had this to say of Sofia's participation in the panel of local leaders, "Sofia inspired the audience at the  Re(new)al discussion. Her passion and eloquence on sustainability issues was apparent, and she represented Stone Ridge in a remarkable way. On a panel of heavy hitters, including Rabbi Warren Stone, a climate change leader for three decades, and Alan Yu, from the Center for American Progress, Sofia gave a unique perspective, which referenced her experience at Stone Ridge, and how Stone Ridge has helped her develop a passion for activism."

Special thanks to science teachers Joanna Caudle and Heidi Johnson for mentoring Sofia.

Stone Ridge Graduation Speaker Announced

Dr. Beverley Robinson Wheeler, a graduate of Stone Ridge Class of 1972, will be the Stone Ridge Commencement speaker on Thursday, June 6, 2019. Dr. Wheeler became the director of DC Hunger Solutions in 2015. In this role, she is responsible for leading the efforts to improve public policies to end hunger, reduce poverty, promote nutrition and increase the availability of healthy affordable food in low-income areas; maximize participation in all federal nutrition programs; and educate the public about both the stark reality of hunger's existence in the nation's capital and the real opportunities for effective solutions.

Dr. Wheeler has over 30 years of experience in all phases of public and private sector policy development working in process development, crisis resolution, civic engagement, community/economic development and planning as well as policy development and implementation. She has 20 years of experience working with the DC government and the DC Council at the executive level as Executive Director of the State Board of Education and Neighborhood Action; Chief of Staff to Phil Mendelson; and Special Assistant to three City Administrators. She is the former president and CEO of Center City Public Charter Schools.

She holds a B.S. in Social and Decision Science and a M.S. in Management and Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as a Master's and Doctorate in Education from Harvard University. She is a past member of the Board of Trustees at Carnegie Mellon University and past President of the Carnegie Mellon Alumni Association. Dr. Wheeler served as a Trustee for Stone Ridge, from 1994-2000, is a past recipient of the Barat Medal from Stone Ridge, and has been an active alumna by returning to campus to speak to our students at Social Action assemblies and on various alumnae panels.

We are honored and grateful to welcome Dr. Wheeler to join us at Commencement for the Class of 2019.