Mary Kate Barnes H’59 ’77 P’11 ’13 ’19

Mary Kate is the Assistant Head of School 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 39, is a member of the Head of School’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 budget.

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 of School/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 of School Steve Murray H’54 '55 ’65 ’16 P’16 ’21.

Contact Information



(609) 895-2100


(609) 896-4991


Hogate Hall


Babs Prunetti
(609) 895-2011

Through House and Harkness, Lawrenceville challenges a diverse community of promising young people to lead lives of learning, integrity, and high purpose.  Our mission is to inspire the best in each to seek the best for all.