GSB Class of 2024 Honored in Commencement Ceremony

GSB Class of 2024 Honored in Commencement Ceremony

It was a picture-perfect day to celebrate the Gill St. Bernard’s Class of 2024.

On Sunday, June 2, 2024, family, friends, faculty, trustees, and special guests arrived on campus to watch the annual GSB Commencement ceremony. After seniors processed into the Athletic Center to the triumphant sounds of St. Ann’s of Hampton Pipes and Drums, honorary guest Rabbi Robert Green welcomed attendees with thoughtful words in his Invocation. Rabbi Green then introduced Head of School Sid Rowell who shared reflections on the remarkable achievements of this year’s class.

Mr. Rowell continued by announcing the recipient of this year’s St. Bernard’s Chair of Excellence in Teaching Award, Sarah Isusi. The Chair of Excellence was established in 1991 by a group of St. Bernard’s School alumni in order to honor outstanding teachers at GSB and to recognize the profound impact that a good teacher can have on a student. Mrs. Isusi joins a long list of faculty members who have been bestowed this honor for her leadership, creativity, enthusiasm, sensitivity, and professionalism inside the classroom.

Mr. Rowell concluded his opening remarks by awarding the GSB Medal, a recognition to the highest level of service to the school, to Doug Matthews. As a member of the Board of Trustees for twenty years, most recently serving as Board President for the past five years, Mr. Matthews has been a constant source of support and steadfastness to the GSB community.

In keeping with tradition, GSB Kindergarten Teacher Diane Lipnickey came to the podium to give special recognition to this year’s GSB Lifers – students who have attended GSB since 1st Grade – who included Isabel Barsanti, Caroline D’Arcangelis, Peter Frantz Pendell, Elizabeth Herr, Lance Hollingshead, Whitney Lapper, Bradley Matthews, and Jack Meenan.

Seven seniors elected to share their personal reflections at the Commencement ceremony – Dakauri Pinckney, Ella Rapp, Anastasia Klyashtorny, Caroline D’Arcangelis, Ainsley Kroon, Jack Dahler, and Isabel Barsanti.

"A couple of years ago in Chemistry class, I learned that ionic bonds are the strongest, but in Biology, somehow covalent bonds are stronger. I don't know how that works, but I disagree with both. The strongest bonds are the ones you make at Gill and that's something that I'll never let go of."
- Dakauri Pinkckney '24

"We all have the opportunity to start our next chapters. As Nora Ephron, an American writer, once said, 'Your education is only a dress rehearsal for a life that is yours to lead.' We are all so lucky to have been given the chance to flourish at Gill and become better versions of ourselves."
- Ella Rapp '24

"Although we tend to fear the unknown, think back to your first day at Gill. Remember how quickly time passed, and how soon we all became part of its community, and called it home."
- Anastasia Klashtorny '24

"If I were to leave any advice to my younger classmates, my friends, and my contemporaries who are graduating today, it would be this. Always, always take the opportunity. It will pass you by if you do not."
- Caroline D'Arcangelis '24

"If we can remember that each of us have our own struggles, we can have the empathy to accept people for who they are. Over these four years, I've come to learn that our class is composed of intellectuals, artists, performers, and athletes. Today we celebrate how remarkable this class truly is."
- Ainsley Kroon '24

"Class of 2024, if, and when, sadness arises in your lives and you're struggling to keep your corners up, don't mask it. Feel your emotions, be true to yourself, and know that a reason for a smile is right around the corner."
- Jack Dahler '24

Next, faculty and administrative members awarded the Class of 2024 Honors and Prizes to student recipients. These awards were in addition to the ones granted in the 2023-2024 Upper School Academic Awards on May 1, 2024.

Honors & Prize Descriptions


The award is given to the senior female athlete whose ability, leadership, sportsmanship, and team loyalty distinguished her and contributed the most to our athletic program.


The award is presented to the outstanding senior male athlete, in memory of Harold D. Nicholls: teacher, coach, Senior Master, and Headmaster from 1917 to 1957 (“A good friend and wise counselor to generations of boys at St. Bernard’s”).


Given in memory of Caryl and J. Gordon Bennett, the award was established by the Gill School Parents Committee to honor the student who best demonstrates, through active community service, the school’s concern, and consideration for others.

SUSAN H. STOVER AWARD: Michael Ricciardulli

Beginning with the Class of 2003, this award honors Susan H. Stover, who served for many years as Director of Development at the school. It is presented annually to the senior who demonstrates the highest level of service and loyalty to Gill St. Bernard’s.


The Class of 2007 established this award to encourage future seniors to understand the importance of community at GSB. The prize is awarded to a senior who made an outstanding effort to positively affect the experiences of underclassmen, who acted as a role model and leader, and who was inclusive, compassionate, and thoughtful—the characteristics that underclassmen seek to emulate.


The award was established by two graduates of the Class of 1996 to honor a member of the senior class who provided distinctive leadership to both the class and school during their years as an upper school student in extracurricular activities.

JULIAN T. BROWN CUP: Dakauri Pinckney

A St. Bernard’s tradition, the cup has been awarded annually since 1913. It is the highest honor that may be attained by a young man at GSB. This student is chosen from the graduating class based on his character throughout his years at the school. He worked for the good of the school, showed thoughtfulness and consideration, and maintained his integrity. It is this student, more than any other, who exemplifies the characteristics of faith, honor, and consideration.

ELIZABETH GILL AWARD: Caroline D’Arcangelis

This is the highest honor that may be attained by a young woman at GSB. This student is chosen from the graduating class based on her character throughout her years at the school. She worked for the good of the school, showed thoughtfulness and consideration, and maintained her integrity. It is this student, more than any other, who exemplifies the characteristics of faith, honor, and consideration. Part of the tradition is that the recipient receives a red rose.


Named for Jean Loizeaux, a beloved and influential teacher at GSB for 45 years, this award is given to the senior who earned the top academic record.


Michael Composto, Jack Dahler, Sami Feteiha, Peter Frantz Pendell, Elsa Huelsbergen, Ainsley Kroon, Jacob Lavoie, Jeremiah Ng, Melissa Rachofsky, Michael Ricciardulli, Alexander Skiadas, Henry Smith, and Alexa Woodard were among the newly-inducted members of the Cum Laude Society.

Founded in 1906, the Cum Laude Society recognizes excellence, justice, and honor in secondary schools. An association of 382 chapters worldwide, membership within cum laude is granted to those students who rank among the top 20 percent of their graduating class.

Conferral of Diplomas:

After Upper School Director Dr. Joel Coleman conferred diplomas to the Class of 2024, Board of Trustees Chair Mr. Rajiv De Silva officially certified the class: “By the authority vested in me as chair of the Board of Trustees of Gill St. Bernard’s School, and on behalf of its trustees and faculty, I declare you bona fide graduates of the school and entitled to all its rights and privileges thereunto appertaining. The diploma you received is evidence of our actions.”

Please join us in congratulating the Class of 2024 on a remarkable milestone. We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors and can’t wait to have you back on campus soon!

Please enjoy some photos from the event below and view the full gallery of photos through Bedrosian Photo.

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