Mr. Gill brings a wealth of experience to DHS


Jonathan Bacdayan

New Assistant Principal Richard Gill in action at the LMC entrance.

This school year, DHS welcomes a new member of the administration. Christopher Boyle, previous assistant principal, retired at the end of last school year. Taking his position is Richard Gill, 54, who comes to Dartmouth with years of experience in the Coast Guard, the classroom, and administrative roles. 

Yes, the Coast Guard. Mr. Gill, despite a lifelong interest in teaching, did not start until he was, in his own words, knocking on 40. Entering the Coast Guard out of college, he became an officer. He did some interesting things there, including a brush with fame. As an officer, he ran search-and-rescue operations on the night of the Perfect Storm of 1991, the event that inspired the George Clooney film of the same name, and is even referenced in the book. Once he reached eligibility for his pension, however, jobs in that vein held little appeal. 

At this point, teaching became the path he wanted to take. Teaching had always been an interest for him, and with his father and his sister both in the classroom, it was in his family as well. He earned a master’s degree in teaching from Gordon College, and spent around 12 years as a teacher. In this stage of his career, he taught mostly math, especially statistics. AP Stats he says, is the best class offered in high school due to its relevance and the invaluable ability to interpret data that it teaches students.

From his first day teaching, he knew this was the right path. While he worked at Chelsea High School, Mr. Gill dealt with plenty of students that might be considered ‘tough.’ Not the easiest job in the world, but he loved it. “This is what I was made to do,” he recalls thinking. 

During his time both in the classroom and more recently as an administrator, Mr. Gill taught in a few different schools. In the past, he taught at Oxford High School in northern Mass., where DHS Principal Ross Thibault was also working at the time. This link is one of the things that got him interested in the job opening here.

Most recently, he was at Southbridge High, a school most would describe as ‘inner-city.’ especially compared to Westchester County, NY, where he grew up. There in Westchester, engaged families really had a desire to see their kids succeed, and schools were highly valued. This, Mr. Gill said, is something he sees in Dartmouth, as well. As someone whose professional career has taken him to many different places, Mr. Gill has sometimes been regarded cautiously. Here, however the community has been nothing but welcoming. This is the beginning, hopefully, of a long and happy tenure.