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Saint Thomas Academy Names Kelby Woodard Headmaster

Woodard brings corporate, education, public policy and entrepreneurial experience to his new position

Saint Thomas Academy has named Kelby Woodard, currently the founding president of Cristo Rey Dallas College Prep, as its next headmaster, effective July 1, 2020. Woodard is an entrepreneur, business executive, school leader and a former Minnesota state legislator.

“Kelby is a personable, action-oriented leader uniquely qualified to advance the mission of Saint Thomas Academy to develop boys into men of character,” said Daniel E. Kubes ’87, chairman of the board for the college-preparatory, Catholic, military leadership academy serving boys in grades 6-12. “His broad range of experience will serve the Academy and the community well as we shape our future and continue to define educational excellence in the coming generation.”

Since establishing Cristo Rey in 2014, he and his team have built the Catholic prep school to serve more than 500 students from under-resourced communities, relying on corporate partners to fund the school. He led a successful $25-million capital campaign to build a physical campus and annually raises over $2.5 million for school operations. As founding president of Cristo Rey Dallas, Woodard has served in many roles, including teacher, business manager, human resources, admissions officer and chief fundraiser.

Woodard began his corporate career with Target Corporation, a Fortune 100 company. He rose to director of global security, overseeing security of the company’s global supply chain and U.S. distribution centers and a large team of employees across 84 countries. He later started both a global security consulting firm and an import software company, both of which he sold to pursue the opportunity with the Cristo Rey Network of schools.

Prior to relocating to Dallas, Woodard served two terms in the Minnesota House of Representatives, where he regularly advanced important education policy matters as the minority lead for the education finance committee. Woodard is a member of the Knights of Columbus and has served as a major in the Civil Air Patrol.

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Board of Trustees Members:

Mr. Michael Ciresi '64, Founding Partner Ciresi Conlin LLP

Mrs. Sharon D'Agostino, Senior Director, Government Affairs at Johnson & Johnson

Dr. Mary Henderson, Professor of Business Administration at Saint Catherine University

Mr. Daniel Kubes '87, Partner Solheim Investment Partners

Mr. Thomas Votel '75, President and CEO, Tenacious Holdings, Inc.

Father Nate Wills, C.S.C. '95, Assistant Clinical Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Notre Dame

Image of a statue of four students outside Founders Hall at Saint Thomas Academy