Dr. Laura Koehl is resigning as President of Notre Dame Academy (NDA) in Park Hills, KY to become Executive Director of the Sisters of Notre Dame National Sponsorship and Network Office (NSNO) and Chief Operating Officer of the Sisters of Notre Dame National Ministry Corporation.
Dr. Koehl will continue to serve as President of Notre Dame Academy, assuming her new position with the Sisters of Notre Dame of the United States (SND USA) on Sept. 1, 2021. After that date, she will serve as NDA President Emerita to provide continuity to the institution if a new president has not yet been named and to assist in the transition when a new president is hired.
A 1975 NDA graduate, Dr. Koehl has served in many capacities at the school since coming to Notre Dame Academy in 2006. She began as a science teacher and later served as NDA’s first lay Principal from 2010-2015. Dr. Koehl became NDA’s first lay President in 2014 and has served in that capacity since that time.
During her tenure at NDA, the school was recognized as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence in both 2012 and 2019 and it received AdvancED/SACS Accreditation from 2013-2023. The AdvancED/SACS Accreditation is based on a set of rigorous research-based standards and evidence-based criteria that examines the whole institution – its policies, programs, practices, learning conditions, and cultural context – to determine how well the parts work together to carry out the institution’s vision and meet the needs of every learner within it.
As NDA’s President, Dr. Koehl led the school as its chief executive officer and was responsible for mission advancement, strategic planning, development, fundraising, finances, facilities and their related activities. In 2018, she successfully led the Excellence Without Boundaries capital campaign that generated 100 percent of its $7 million fundraising goal.
Dr. Koehl is currently working with the NDA Board of Directors to complete the school’s 2018-22 Strategic Plan: Building Leaders Through Transformative Education. The Board is extremely grateful for Dr. Koehl’s service and the direction she has provided at Notre Dame Academy, said NDA Board Chair Amy Quinn Dye.
“Throughout her 15-year tenure at Notre Dame Academy, Dr. Koehl has provided exemplary leadership to our high school and our community,” Quinn said. “She conveys the mission of NDA and the charism of the Sisters of Notre Dame in all she does. She will be greatly missed by our institution.”
Notre Dame Academy began the President/Principal model of leadership in 2006 when it named Sr. Mary Shauna Bankemper, SND, to the position. Sr. Mary Lynette Shelton, SND, served as the second President of Notre Dame Academy from 2011 to 2014. The NDA Board of Directors will lead the process to search for a new President of NDA.
Dr. Koehl will join SND USA in her new role less than a year after the Sisters of Notre Dame united their four North American provinces – located in Covington, Kentucky, Thousand Oaks, California, Chardon, Ohio, and Toledo, Ohio — into a national organization on July 5, 2020. As the Executive Director of the SND National Sponsorship and Network Office, Dr. Koehl will take a leadership role in supporting the Catholic identity and mission integration and effectiveness of SND sponsored ministries including education, health care and elder care.
The creation of this new national organization allows the congregation’s more than 500 sisters nationwide to combine resource and personnel to focus on its three broad ministry initiatives:
• The education and healthcare institutions founded by the sisters in its four geographic areas
• Ministries serving new needs of people at society’s margins
• Young adult and vocation ministries