• Leadership
Celebrating our 2023 Barat Medal Recipients
Excerpts from Head of School Catherine Ronan Karrels ’86 speech in May 2023.

This is always one of my favorite nights of the year, as it offers a chance to gather with significant leaders in our community for a night of gratitude and celebration. Every single person gathered in this room is a Stone Ridge leader—whether you are a parent, past parent, current or past Board member, or employee— you have supported and strengthened Stone Ridge through your philanthropic support, your volunteerism, your intellect, your work.

The Barat Medal recognizes those leaders who have made a significant difference and who have helped shape the destiny of the School. It is the highest honor that Stone Ridge presents to any non-student of the School.


photo of Mary Schaller '61 and Catherine Karrels

Mary Schaller '61 and Catherine Karrels '86, Head of School

Mary Williams Schaller ’61 is a dedicated member of the Stone Ridge alumnae community and a passionate ambassador of Sacred Heart. A lifelong, published author with a gift for storytelling and writing, Mrs. Schaller took a long trip down memory lane by writing “The House on the Hill, A History of Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart,” completed in 2011. While Mrs. Schaller's books and other works have been published in countries around the world, she wanted to “give back” to Stone Ridge in a way that was special to her and did so by providing Stone Ridge with its history in manuscript form. In honor of the Stone Ridge Centennial, Mrs. Schaller updated “The House on the Hill” to include the most recent decade of Stone Ridge history. She has also served on the Centennial Communications Committee.

We are so grateful for her thorough research and diligent efforts to preserve the history of Stone Ridge. In this centennial year, it is a great honor to recognize her for helping our School tell the beautiful stories that have shaped this community.


Suzanne and Mark Matan with Catherine Karrels '86, Head of School

Suzanne and Mark Matan with Catherine Karrels '86, Head of School

Lifelong Washingtonians Mark and Suzanne Matan have been dedicated supporters of Stone Ridge with their time and philanthropy. They have been part of the Stone Ridge community for 14 years since their daughter Haley enrolled in Pre-Kindergarten in 2009.

The Matan's unwavering support of Catholic education is reflected in their daughters’ educations, as well as their own. In addition to their strong engagement at Stone Ridge, Mr. Matan also sat on the Board of Directors of Gonzaga and served as President of the Board of Directors for the Visitation Academy in Frederick, MD.

The Matans played a significant role in both the Gators Go Turf Campaign and the Cor • Unum Campaign, which were pivotal in transforming the campus and enhancing the sense of community at Stone Ridge. Projects like the Mater Center and Campus Walk are indeed truly transformational projects in the life of the School. They rely on the collective vision and leadership of so many stakeholders and so many individuals coming together.

Mr. and Mrs. Matan are two of our philanthropic leaders who made both of these projects happen. Mr. Matan's expertise in land development was helpful as we bounced ideas around in early stages, and their willingness to be early leadership investors in both projects helped us not only to meet our goals but also to inspire others to give generously.


Catherine Karrels'86, Head of School with Leigh and Sean Warfield.

Catherine Karrels '86, Head of School with Leigh and Sean Warfield.

Sean and Leigh Warfield have served in many capacities at Stone Ridge since their daughter Madison ’26 started in Grade 1 nine years ago. Mrs. Warfield, a Senior Director for Human Resources at the American Chemistry Council, and Mr. Warfield, a Senior Director at Tishman Speyer, have taken on major leadership roles within the Stone Ridge community through their involvement with the Stone Ridge Parent Association (SRPA), Father’s Club, and the Mentor Family Program.

Mr. Warfield served on the SRPA's executive committee from 2019 to 2021 and then founded the Athletics Committee for the Father’s Club and took on the role of Athletic Coordinator in 2021. In this role, he has helped spearhead Gator Game Days, Breakfast of Champions, The Swamping of the Competition event, and so much more. Anyone who has participated in Father’s Club events in recent years knows how critical this group is to building community within our parent body. And with the mission of connecting with their daughters and supporting one another as dads, it is a group that brings a very unique and powerful dimension to our community life.

Mrs. Warfield has volunteered for many roles over the past nine years, including serving as a class representative, Chair of the Christmas decorating committee, and Chair of the Middle School Activities Committee. She has worked with the Admissions office as a volunteer for many Open Houses and served as a mentor to new families in both the Middle and Upper Schools.

Over the past two years, Leigh has served a very important role at Stone Ridge, that of President of the Parent Association. She assumed the role at the height of the pandemic and committed herself to continue the important work of building community even during a time when parents and students were socially distanced. In her first year as president, she helped organize community-building events over Zoom, and upon entering her second year as president was able to implement a robust calendar of events that brought together our community in a variety of much-needed ways. ❤