top of page

Patrick "Pat" Bassett

Patrick (Pat) Bassett co-founded Heads Up Educational Consulting in 2013, a consulting firm that provides strategic, operational, governance, and programmatic guidance and consultation to educational enterprises.

He began in 1970 as a teacher in an independent school, then subsequently becoming the head of two independent schools, followed by assuming the role of president of ISACS, a regional association of independent schools, on his professional path that ultimately led in August 2001 to appointment as the president of the National Association of Independent Schools. NAIS, a membership organization for approximately 2000 independent (private) schools and associations of schools in the U.S. and abroad, is the “national voice for independent schools and the center for advocacy for independent K-12 college-prep education, research and trend analysis, leadership and governance guidance, and professional development opportunities for school and board leaders. He retired from NAIS in June of 2013, and became co-founder and senior consultant of Heads Up Educational Consulting. In that role, he continues to lead workshops, give keynote address, facilitate strategic planning and executive searches, and train boards, school leaders, and faculty on what constitute great schools, great teachers, and great leaders.

Bassett began his career in independent schools in 1970 as an English teacher, lacrosse coach, and dorm parent at Woodberry Forest School (VA), an all-boys boarding school. In 1980, he became headmaster of an all-girls school, Stuart Hall (VA), where he remained until 1989, when he was appointed head of school at Pomfret School (CT). From 1993-2001, Bassett was the president of the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS). He was also an adjunct faculty member of Teachers College, Columbia University during his tenure at NAIS.

Bassett has served on the board as a trustee of NAIS (1985-1989), The Multicultural Alliance (1994-2000), The Council for Spiritual and Ethical Education (CSEE 1996-2013), The Council for American Private Education (CAPE 2001-2013), the National Network of Schools in Partnership (NNSP, a public/private school consortium, 2012-2014), and his alma mater, Williams College (2010-15). He currently serves on the board of trustees of United Educators (a school and university risk management insurance company), Finalsite (a website & mobile technologies company), Woodberry Forest School (VA), the Benedict Foundation, and Grab the Torch (a non-profit dedicated to inculcating philanthropy in youth).

Professional recognition has included being named a Kellogg National Leadership Fellow in 1986; recipient of the Educational Leadership Award in 2000 by The Klingenstein Center of Teachers College (Columbia University) and global leadership awards from The European Council for International Schools (ECIS), from the Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools (NESA), and from NAIS.

A Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude graduate of Williams College (’70) where he was captain of the lacrosse team, Bassett also holds a master’s degree in film studies from Northwestern University (’73). He and his wife, Barbara, have two grown daughters and two grandchildren living in Boulder, CO.

bottom of page