By Mary Madelyn Broom
Recently, Oak Hall welcomed Dr. Diana Murdock as the Director of the Middle School and Academic Dean of Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade. Born in Florida and raised in Georgia, Dr. Murdock followed in the footsteps of her mother and father, both of whom were educators for more than 30 years. “I always knew what my major in college was going to be and I never wavered,” she recalled.
Prior to joining the Oak Hall community, Dr. Murdock worked in education for 20 years. She attended Berry College where she got her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Early Childhood Education, then worked as a classroom teacher in second through fourth grade. She returned to school at the University of Georgia (UGA) to get her Ph.D. in elementary education while teaching middle grades education courses and supervising middle school preservice teachers, which are students in training to become teachers. Following her time at UGA, she worked at Winthrop University teaching Preservice Teacher Education as an Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education where she supervised preservice teachers at the university’s college of education.
Dr. Murdock “missed being in schools on a daily basis” and began looking for an opportunity to get back into pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade education. She was enthusiastic to find the position as Academic Dean at Oak Hall and “thought it sounded perfect,” she said. While having worked many years in education, this is Dr. Murdock’s first role as an administrator. “I didn’t intend to become an administrator in my early career. However, as I have worked in education, I have taken various leadership opportunities and have walked down that path because I feel like I can hopefully make a positive impact for our students, families, and faculty,” she explained.
Uplifted by the Oak Hall community, Dr. Murdock admires her colleagues. “The teachers inspire me every day,” she expressed. Dr. Murdock understands the challenges of being an educator and enjoys the numerous events that are shared with the students. “I love watching our masterful teachers put together lessons for our students that are nothing short of art,” she mentioned. “We are doing important work and having fun doing it,” she continued. We welcome Dr. Murdock to the Oak Hall family and look forward to a fantastic year with her!