Mary Kate Barnes H’59 ’77 P’11 ’13 ’19
Mary Kate is the Assistant Head Master and Director of Advancement at The Lawrenceville
School, an independent college-preparatory school in central New Jersey for 818 boarding and
day students from 35 states and 45 countries. She manages the Alumni and Development team
of 32, is a member of the Head Master’s Senior Staff, and is responsible for all facets of the
advancement program. In addition she serves as the liaison to the Board of Trustees
for the Development and Trustees Committees.
Barnes joined Lawrenceville as a capital gifts officer in 1991 and was named Director of Alumni
and Development following the successful conclusion of the $125 million Leadership Campaign,
at the time the most ambitious fundraising effort ever undertaken by an American independent
school. More recently, Barnes was instrumental in closing the largest single gift in the School's
200+ year history.
Under her direction, the Alumni and Development team has raised well north of $750 million for
projects including endowment funds for financial aid, teaching chairs, faculty support and
international travel; and capital projects, such as the Al-Rashid Health and Wellness Center,
Carter House, F. M. Kirby Math and Science Center, Getz Turf Field Complex, House
restorations, and the renovations of Pop Hall, Foundation House, the Bath House, the
Bowl, Abbott Dining Center, the Gruss Center for Art and Design, and Lawrenceville's future
athletic and dining commons. Her team also oversees The Lawrenceville Fund, Lawrenceville’s
annual giving program, which raises more than $6 million each year to support the operating
A graduate of Bowdoin College, Barnes began her career in the reinsurance industry, working
first at General Reinsurance, then serving as a Vice President at Aon Benfield in the treaty
reinsurance division. In addition to her work at Lawrenceville she served as a volunteer and
reunion chair for her Bowdoin class, and as a member of the College's Alumni Council. She was
a founding member of Women in Development - Mercer County, and currently serves as Chair
of the Cape Eleuthera Foundation Board of Trustees. In 2017 she was recognized by the Council
for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) with the Robert Bell Crow Memorial
Award for distinguished service to the profession of Advancement. Barnes is a parent of three
Lawrentians, and an honorary member of the Lawrenceville classes of 1959 and 1977.
As Assistant Head Master/Director of Advancement, Barnes will be the architect of the School’s next capital campaign in support of “Lawrenceville 20/20,” the strategic plan introduced in 2016 by Head Master Steve Murray H’54 '55 ’65 ’16 P’16 ’21.