Our Leadership

Claire Goldsmith

Executive Director

MSON’s Executive Director since 2016, Claire helped to develop the program while serving in the leadership of the Stanford Online High School. During her five-year tenure there, she oversaw year-over-year growth in enrollment and managed financial aid, student recruitment, and school collaborations as Director of Admissions and External Relations; taught history; and served as the liaison to the Malone Family Foundation for the school’s $5 million scholarship endowment. For four years, Claire taught English and French and coached debate at the Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles. Claire is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Enrollment Management Association, the Winsor School in her hometown of Boston, MA, and Wilshire Boulevard Temple in Los Angeles, CA, as well as a member of the Institute for Educational Advancement’s Caroline D. Bradley Scholarship Committee. She holds an AB from Harvard College in History and Literature and a master’s degree in Policy, Organization, and Leadership Studies from the Stanford Graduate School of Education. She completed graduate work on a Harvard fellowship at the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris and was a Fellow with Education Pioneers.

Britta Buehnemann

Britta Buehnemann

Consulting Director of Technology

Britta serves as the Consulting Directory of Technology for MSON in addition to her primary role as the Director of Technology for the Stanford Online High School. She has over 20 years of experience in building and managing software systems and technology teams in various industries at large companies and startups. She applies her strong belief in building and supporting user friendly and robust technologies in the educational space with a strong emphasis on customer satisfaction to students and instructors at both the Stanford Online High School and MSON.

Ben Taylor

Dean of Instruction

Ben taught Modern Physics in MSON from 2015-2017. He now splits his time between his MSON Dean of Instruction role and his work as Director of Academic Technology at Hopkins School in New Haven, Connecticut. After leaving the world of Experimental Condensed Matter Physics in 2003, Ben immersed himself in the world of independent school education at Hopkins. To date Ben has taught grades 8-12 in an array of physical science courses including calculus based physics and Modern Physics—courses that open minds to both structured critical thinking and staggering possibility. In that span he also served his school as coach, adviser, Head Adviser, MSON teacher, and many other administrative and student-centered roles. His focus has, since day one, been on innovating in his classroom; making big changes to his methodologies and materials always with one goal in mind: students must retain and enjoy the concepts they are taught.

Britta Buehnemann

Chesley Cunningham

Operations Manager

Chesley joined MSON in 2020 from Fort Worth Country Day School, an MSON member school, where she served as Middle School Technology Coordinator for five years. There, she offered support to students, teachers, and parents, sharing new technologies and pedagogical strategies with teachers, and helping them integrate technology into their classrooms. She strives to create positive learning environments (on and offline) and is interested in augmented reality and digital health. Chesley holds a Masters in Education in Instruction and Curriculum with an emphasis on K-12 Technology from the University of Florida and a B.A. from Florida State University. Chesley recently moved back to her home state of Florida and enjoys spending time with her puppy, Stella.

MSON Steering Committee

The MSON Steering Committee is composed of the founders of MSON and Heads of several MSON Schools.

Douglas Lagarde

Severn School, Chair

Ken Aldridge

Wilmington Friends School

Kai Bynum

Hopkins School

Vince Durnan

University School of Nashville

Kristi Gibbs

Brownell Talbot School

Tomohiro Hoshi

Stanford Online High School

Rick Sommer

Stanford University (Emeritus)

Marjo Talbott

Maret School

Geoff Wagg

Waynflete School

The most valuable attribute of this course is my teacher’s passion for teaching. He is also willing to be flexible and work with students to help them explore their passion.

- MSON Student