Meet the Admission Team

Our team is an eclectic group with divergent backgrounds and histories. We all believe deeply in the value of progressive education and enjoy seeing its positive impact for Putney students every day. To learn more about why we love Putney, read on!

Contact our admissions office: (802) 387-6201

Our Admission Committee: Students & Adults

Students serve on our admission committee and help shape the future Putney School community.

John Barrengos

Director of Admission and Financial Aid

B.A. Tufts University
M.A. Columbia University Teachers College
Ed.M. Columbia University Teachers College
Ed.D. Columbia University Teachers College

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I have had a professional crush on Putney’s confident embrace of progressive education since I was in graduate school in the 1990s. I’ve always loved admission and seen it as an intersection of the present and future tense of a school community. The caliber of our students and parents and the mesh and match of our families with our aspirations defines the potential of our school.

Helping a family to choose the right educational community for their child’s next chapter asks that we carefully come to understand kids and their families, share our lenses with the family, and imagine a child’s learning journey through our school.

I get to live and work at Putney. My wife serves as our Dean of Faculty, my son just graduated after four powerful years, and my daughter, a member of the Class of 2018, just graduated from college and begins a directing fellowship this fall. I love being here because our values are fully invited into our community and our work. The physical setting is stunning. The community is grounded and suffers little pretentiousness. And adults honor students’ curiosities and passions in service of learning as our primary goal.

Learning is my fuel. After college, I began working as a banker for hospitals and schools and social service agencies. I’d never taken a finance class, but my work asked me to design programs in Lotus 123. When I left banking and began working in schools, I learned about educational design, teaching, admissions, fundraising, board work, and strategic planning. I’ve had the honor of working in nearly every job that helps schools operate, and I enjoyed investing five years in graduate study of schools and the organizational and group dynamics that animate them. At Putney, I get the pleasure of learning with each new student and family I meet. I get to (re)learn how to sing in a choral group as I join the Madrigals during most school years, and I get to (re)learn social psychology each time I recreate it with my students in class.

My favorite is the change of most seasons.  I love the shift from summer to fall, because the start of school has always felt, deep in my bones, like a renewal of life.  The shift to winter is the coziest time to hang out with my family, and the shift to spring is vital and welcome after one or two more weeks of winter than I can tolerate.

Libby Holmes

Director of International Programs

B.A. Miami University
M.A.T. School for International Training

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Putney creates and recreates a remarkable and compelling community each year, comprised of energetic new students from all over the world, seasoned returning students prepared to lead and contribute, and a generous-hearted, committed faculty and staff of able adults, some of whom are long-time friends and others who are more recent arrivals offering new ways to understand education and fresh camaraderie.  Together, we make Putney more than just a school.

Far from my earlier studies in literature and language teaching, I’m now learning about native plants, natural gardening, and other horticultural matters.

I admit I love my office best.  It’s a place of both quiet focus and of close collaboration and conversation with students. What’s more, the location gives me a broad view of campus, and of the local ‘travels’ of student friend groups, teachers, the occasional horseback-riding, mountain-biking, or cross-country skiing group, campus pups, and other friends in the school community.

I love the first warm days after Spring’s new grass has filled the lawns, when first-year students finally believe what we’ve been telling them: winter and mud DO eventually give way to lilacs and apple blossoms and newborn calves.

Hallie Flower

Admission Counselor

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Over the years, I have admired the Putney School environment. It’s an inspiring, intentional space where students can dive into their curiosity, discover a stronger sense of self, and trust that their contribution to the community is valuable. Being a part of transformative spaces that center the growth of young people is incredibly rewarding.

I love the work of admissions here as students begin to imagine what is possible. There is a thoughtfulness to understand students as whole people and best serve families that is a pleasure to be a part of. I enjoy the challenge.

The innate sense of community here is open, helpful, and honors individual contributions within the whole and makes it a good place to put one’s energy.

My personal work as a theater director and educator is a lifelong sandbox of exploring new ideas and developing skills. I love collaborating with others as we chase stories to share on-stage. Every production brings its own demands, obstacles, and revelatory confrontations to move through together. I particularly love facilitating young people’s discovery of themselves and their craft through theatre arts. It inspires and teaches me – and guides me in all my other activities.

Joining this great team is certainly a new learning adventure. It’s a feast of new ways to understand people and the places they create together. This is a fascinating place and I feel lucky to collaborate with folks who love young people and learning with such heart.

Fall is alway a stunning season in Southern Vermont but it’s that first return of cooler breezes in the late summer that I’ve fallen in love with here at Putney. That exciting first promise of fall is all the more tasty in this beautiful setting.

Miyé Lampriere ’17

Admission Counselor

B.A. Pitzer College

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Before the sun rises, most people are still tucked in their warm beds; however, the students doing barn chores head out to take care of the animals. It is not always fun or easy, but if they do not wake up, the animals will go hungry, and the pens will pile up with manure. Putney teaches us to care for each other and our environment. It is not only what is learned in the classroom but the curiosity that emerges from conversations with friends, faculty, and shoveling cow manure.

I grew up in many different places, moving every three years; I quickly realized that the best way to learn was through sharing conversations with people from different backgrounds. There is a saying in Japanese: Ichi go- Ichi e, which means one opportunity, one encounter. Encounters are always an opportunity for me to learn something new.

If I am not in the main building, people will most likely find me on Putney’s trails. It is a place where I can think about my day. The woods are constantly changing, and its transition reminds me of time passing (Turn, Turn, Turn by the Byrds).

I enjoy late summer when the students return with renewed excitement to be back on the hill. It is also when the tomatoes and corn are ready to be harvested which then the KDU staff prepare for lunch.

Paolo Woodard

Admission Counselor

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I love Putney enough to move across the country to work here; it is a learning journey for me just like it is for all our prospective families. I love building and developing relationships with families and helping them navigate through what can be an overwhelming journey.

Putney is a unique and special place that finds the right people at the right time. I’m so looking forward to seeing these young, talented minds embrace rigorous academics and evolve within their passions. Students here are confident and lead with honesty and curiosity. Each individual at Putney learns and creates while feeling seen, heard, and appreciated. I was drawn to Putney by the chance to collaborate with dynamic professionals, contribute my experiences and perspectives, and share new adventures.

Journalism taught me to seek out stories and inform others. I like to think of learning as an ongoing story everyone should share. Whether through my experiences or daily interactions, I am dedicated to learning one new thing each day in whatever capacity I can.

The barn would be my favorite place on campus. The opportunity to work with and learn more about animals is a true privilege. Being from California, I am not used to actual seasons. However, I’m looking forward to fall!

Todd Dowling

Admission Counselor

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I was faculty at Putney for five years in the math and science departments. I loved the academic freedom to design my own curriculum and encouraged students to do the same. The moment when a student would get excited about an independent project or project week was always the best part of the day. I loved incorporating arts into student assessment and talking often about the chemistry atom project where students used nearly every medium from 2D and 3D to ceramics, tap dance, weaving, and music composition. Putney students have an impressive ability to communicate their understanding of science artistically.

I remain active by setting ambitious long-term goals. One is to ride my bike 50 miles in all 50 states. This has been a wonderful way to understand our country better and see places I would never have seen otherwise. Another current goal centers around birding the local area. I hope to see as many bird species in Windham County (the county where Putney is) as possible. This has connected me to the local birding community, inspiring me to offer an ornithology class in the spring. It also connected our school to the MOTUS collaboration and the construction of the radio telemetry tower on campus. I’ve found that my large goals lead to unexpected opportunities.

Despite my wife’s confusion, my perfect day is 18F and sunny with skis on my feet. I look forward to skiing each winter and am excited to introduce my son to skiing on Putney’s trails and Brattleboro’s tow rope this year.

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