It is the Dawn of a New Day at Holy Innocents' Episcopal School, notably marked by the completion of the Our Time Capital Campaign. The final projects of Our Time, the largest capital campaign in the school's history, were the new Dorothy Sullivan Lower School building and the Owen Family Quadrangle. A ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony were held on Friday, Aug. 22, celebrating all the members of our community whose vision, hard work and devotion to transforming our school campus made this day a reality.
The ceremony was held outside the new Lower School with all students, faculty and staff from all divisions in attendance. All were invited to don "Bear Wear" to show their school spirit.
Neil Pruitt, chair of the Our Time campaign, welcomed everyone to the event and recognized the challenges associated with running a campaign during the pandemic. "This was a monumental task with HIES' largest campaign in school history. You all came to the rescue," he said. "Now we have a physical campus that matches the quality of the education you receive."
Paul Barton, head of school, echoed that message. "Behind every gift of every size is a powerful, personal story," he said. "The components of this campaign are all about enhancing and transforming the student experience in academics, athletics, the arts and in new spaces for our community to gather, connect, play, perform and innovate."
Rusty Paul, mayor of Sandy Springs and parent of three HIES alumni, called the school "a key center of education and faith. People move to this community for their children to attend HIES."
Mr. Barton recognized Dorothy Sullivan, for whom the new Lower School is named. "She is a friend, mentor, confidant, teacher, principal, associate head of school for generations of Golden Bear students, teachers, alumni, trustees, parents, grandparents and countless others," he said. "Dorothy embodies the Holy Innocents’ mission and spirit. She loves to learn. She respects everyone. She has a deep, abiding faith. And more than anything, she serves this community."
Ms. Sullivan thanked her family, many of whom traveled from out of town to attend the event, friends, colleagues and the community. "You don't know what it feels like to be Dorothy Sullivan when you visit this campus," she said. "I've been Cinderella several times."
The Rt. Rev. Rob Wright, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, remarked on the historical significance of the day. "We're standing here because Holy Innocents' Episcopal Church had a vision. This is absolutely extraordinary," he said. "We had critical leadership at a critical time."
Ms. Sullivan, the Rev. Dr. Bill Murray, rector of Holy Innocents' Episcopal Church and Bishop Wright blessed the building with holy oil from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. School leaders joined with them to cut the ribbon, officially opening the new Dorothy Sullivan Lower School.
"Her name on this building and her love and appreciation for what happens here will be its ultimate blessing," Mr. Barton said.
— Christina Mimms