The CIS Board of Trustees
The Copenhagen International School Board consists of elected and appointed members, primarily parents of students enrolled in the school. The Board strives for gender balance and diversity of cultural background, skills and experience. All members are volunteers.
As the legal authorising body of CIS, the Board focuses its efforts first and foremost on supporting and promoting the school’s vision and mission. In addition, we appoint and support the school’s Director, we oversee the school’s fiscal health, and we review and update the school’s policies and procedures.
Every 3-4 years the Board drives the creation of a strategic framework, in collaboration with contributions from the CIS community. The most recent strategic framework was presented in 2013 and its implementation is ongoing.
The Board consists of 4 subcommittees and holds monthly meetings; also present at these meetings can be any co-opted advisors along with members of the school's administration, faculty representatives and one student representative.
As with any Board, by our very definition we delegate the day-to-day administration and operational decisions to the Director.
The 2016-17 CIS School Board
Back, L-R: Jesper Møller, Lars Krogsgaard, Dimitri Griffioen, Sylvia Scharf
Front, L-R: Heather Stevenson, Rosalind Gibbons, Jay Watkins, Brit van Ooijen, Caroline Banerjee
Chair and Vice Chair
The Board Chair acts as a sounding board in weekly meetings with the Director, and oversees the composition and functioning of the subcommittees, of which she/he is an ex officio member. In addition, the Chair leads the annual Board induction, presides over Board meetings and presents the annual report at the Annual General Meeting. The Board Chair liaises with and delegates authority to the Vice Chair as and when needed.
Lars is Danish and married to Noreen who is from NYC. Their three daughters all attend CIS enrolled in our Primary, Middle and Senior School..Lars holds an MBA in Finance and International Business from the Stern School of Business at New York University and a BSc in Economics from Copenhagen Business School. He has worked with private equity investments for 20 years and has been an active investor in more than twenty-five companies and, inter alia, served on the board of these companies. Lars welcomes the opportunity to contribute to the continuous development of the school. Lars will be chairing the Financial Committee.
The Governance committee ensures effective board leadership in accordance with the school's mission, ongoing needs and development goals. In addition, the Governance commiittee plays a vital role in Board succession planning, orientation, annual governance training and Board evaluation. Last but not least, this committee oversees development, review, amendment, adoption and annulment of the school's policies and procedures.
My name is Rosalind Gibbons. I ran for the board because I firmly believe that a good well-rounded education is one of the best things that a parent can give to their children. Good schools are dynamic; adapting to children, time and places to provide an inspiring learning environment. CIS achieves this with the International Baccalaureate Program. With the building of the new school at Nordhavn, CIS is entering a very exciting period of growth, which I feel I could contribute to.
My background is in sustainability and environmental project management. In Australia I had a consultancy business focussing on community- local government initiatives, including the establishment of governance frameworks, education and sustainable living programs. I have been involved in the PTA at our previous schools and volunteered in the classroom.
Who are we? We are a British – Australian family. That is my husband and I was born in Britain but have spent the last 19 years in Australia. Our boys are true blue Aussies. We moved to Denmark in August 2014 for my husband to take up a position at København Universitet. I am not working at the moment but I am looking to re-establish my small projects consultancy here. As a family we are passionate about the environment and enjoy the great outdoors. We expect to be in Denmark for several years and are embracing the lifestyle, language and weather.
Marketing and Strategy
This committee collaborates with the CIS Director of Communications and Advancement and other relevant teams to support the development of a strong CIS Marketing and Communication Plan that will strengthen the vision and mission of CIS now and in the long term. In addition, a current priority is to support the school community in ensuring a smooth transition to the new school campus in Nordhavn in 2017.
Sylvia and her German husband Klaus moved to Copenhagen many years ago after having lived and worked in Germany as well as in the UK. The eldest of her two sons graduated from CIS in 2016 while the younger one will graduate in 2017. Her professional background is a BSc in Economics from Philipps University, Marburg and a MBA in Marketing and International Business from Georg-August University, Göttingen. She has worked for many years as Marketing Manager in various international companies such as Marbert, DIESEL, Procter & Gamble, and WELLA. Today, Sylvia works as Marketing and Customer Relation Manager for an international company in Denmark. Furthermore she is the COO of a yacht charter company in Greece/Turkey.
Sylvia was a member of the board of an international Montessori Kindergarten for more than two years. In the eight years prior to CIS, she served on the board of Rygaards School. This resulted in an in-depth knowledge of the international market, in particular by regularly attending international conferences and seminars. She was awarded a diploma in "Sustainable International School Governance" from the European Council of International Schools in London.
Sylvia believes that continuous school improvement, in line with its mission and vision, should drive the actions of the board and that constant evaluation of the tools and methods used is necessary to compete successfully as an international school.
Heather has been part of the CIS community since 2014 and her twins are currently in Middle School at CIS. Originally from California, her Danish husband's job and family has brought them to Denmark.
Heather has over 20 years of marketing, sales and general management experience and an MBA from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Most recently, she was Senior Vice President of Marketing Communications and Revenue (Fundraising) for the 5th largest Public Television station in the US. In this role, she managed all marketing communications for the TV station including launching the station's first strategic social media plan. Prior to her time is public media, she worked for a range of media companies in the US and Denmark and whether working for a large media conglomerate like Sony Pictures or Twentieth Century Fox or as CEO at a venture capital backed company based in Denmark, she has consistently delivered on business plans and brought a positive attitude to everything she does. As for her volunteer activities, for the past two years, she has been President of LINK (Ladies International Network København) a women's expat network.
Heather brings to the CIS board strong leadership and organization skills and proficiency in establishing strategies and marketing plans. She has managed multi-cultural teams and worked with staff and volunteers to accomplish organization's goals. CIS is central to Heather's family's life for the foreseeable future and she feels it is very important that all our children have the best possible educational and social development experiences while they attend CIS.
The New School committee actively collaborates with the Copenhagen International School Property Foundation (Ejendomsfonden Copenhagen International School) to coordinate the realisation of the new school campus in Nordhavn in 2017.
Jay arrived in Denmark in 2014 with his wife Gretchen and their three children. Though Americans, they have spent the majority of the past 20 years overseas with Denmark the 6th country the family now calls home. As a full time dad, Jay has always enjoyed getting involved in the community, serving on the boards of non-profits organizations and school PTAs, in the various countries that have been home. He has enjoyed his involvement in CIS sports, the PTA and general volunteering where needed. Jay feels fortunate to be part of the wonderful CIS community, is excited to have his children engaged in an IB education and looks forward to our transition to Nordhavn. He will serve on the New School committee, utilizing his engineering and project management background.
The Finance Committee liaises with the school's CFO to provide advice and guidance on all financial matters. In addition, this committee reviews and identifies any issues relating to the school's operating and capital budgets and annual external audit processes.
Laura Lochman arrived in Copenhagen August 1, 2016 to take up her post as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy to the Kingdom of Denmark.
Laura Lochman is a career American diplomat with over 27 years of experience in policy analysis and implementation. She has served in various overseas assignments with the Department of State, including as Economic Counselor in Bogota, Colombia, Consul General in Calgary, Canada, Deputy Economic Counselor and Chief of the Trade and Investment Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow and Deputy Economic Counselor and Environment, Science and Technology Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Madrid. Earlier, she served in Caracas, Venezuela and Sao Paulo, Brazil.
In Washington, Laura served in the State Department’s Office of Cuban Affairs, the Bureau of South Asian Affairs, and in the Bureau of Oceans, Environment and Science. Laura was detailed for one year from the State Department to a non-governmental organization, the Nature Conservancy, as a policy advisor. She has also spent two years as the State Department’s Deputy Director of the Office of Central European Affairs.
She graduated with a B.A. in International Studies and French from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She also studied at the Université de Montpellier, France. Laura, her husband Joseph Schaefer, and their son Nicholas enjoy skiing, hiking, and the outdoors. Laura holds a black belt in karate, and her foreign languages include French, Spanish, Portuguese and Russian.
School policies reflect the ethos of a school, its core values and intent. They provide guidance and support for staff, pupils, parents and the community in a diverse range of situations from administration and school discipline through to environmental footprint and catering. The policies aim to ensure that any decisions taken within the school community are fair, just and transparent. They outline what the school community can expect from the school, the school’s expectations of the community and how the school will handle various situations.
The CIS Policies are adopted by the Board and are comprehensibly reviewed every five years. (Last review 2016.) However individual policies are updated as and when deemed necessary to reflect the dynamic nature of our school environment.