NSA announces new head of school

Published 9:21 pm Friday, April 19, 2013

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy announced the appointment of Deborah B. Russell as the Academy’s sixth Head of School this week.

Russell came to NSA in August of 2011 as the director of admissions, where she has used her skills to help shape the Office of Admissions. Russell’s experiences in high-level management, coupled with her institutional knowledge about NSA, have prepared her well for the Head of School role.



Her experiences in leading strategic initiatives, crafting marketing plans and managing technology implementation within organizations have already shaped and strengthened the school’s independent school practices. Most recently, Russell represented NSA when she traveled to China on an international student recruitment trip sponsored by New Oasis International Education. In addition to the recruitment and retention of students and families, the Office of Admissions, under Debbie’s leadership, has successfully focused on diversity as part of the mission of the school, which provides NSA students with a broader view in a global world.

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As Head of School, Russell will continue to support NSA’s mission to provide an academically rigorous college preparatory education in an atmosphere fostering moral character, respect, responsibility and compassion.

Before coming to Nansemond-Suffolk Academy, Russell worked as the Regional Manager for Etcetera, based in New York, and was responsible for developing and managing the North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C., markets. Debbie has an International Master of Business Administration degree from the University of South Carolina and a Bachelor of Science of Business Administration degree from Bowling Green State University.

Russell will replace the academy’s fifth Head of School, Colley W. Bell III, who began his tenure in July 2008. He has accepted the Head of School position at Middleburg Academy in Middleburg.

Debbie and her husband, David, an NSA Class of ‘88 alumnus, reside in Suffolk. Their sons, David and Max, attend Nansemond-Suffolk Academy.