Dani Finn - Carrie Ricker's New Principal

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A dynamic and innovative educational leader, Dani Finn grew up in Hawaii. In 2002 she received her undergraduate degree in social studies education and began her teaching career in Lumberton, North Carolina where she taught social studies and was the assistant boys and girls soccer coach at Lumberton High School. 

In 2004 Mrs. Finn moved to Wilmington, NC after accepting a job as a social studies teacher and boys and girls soccer coach at Eugene Ashley High School. Mrs. Finn had several duties during her service at Ashley. These include, but are not limited to, teacher, social studies department chair, men’s and women’s soccer coach, prom coordinator and social studies representative for the school curriculum team. She also assisted New Hanover County in the development and alignment of a new statewide social studies K-12 curriculum. In 2013 Mrs. Finn was awarded a Masters of Curriculum and Instruction degree and administrative license from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. At that time she was hired as the Curriculum and Instruction Assistant Principal at New Hanover High School in North Carolina. During this time, she also partnered with the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Educational Program and served as an instructional coach for beginning teachers and future educators. 

In 2014 Mrs. Finn was recruited to assist in building Hampton High School in Hampton, Georgia. Hampton High School was designed to serve as the model school for Personalized Learning. As the co-architect, she helped recruit a staff of highly effective teachers, served as an instructional coach, assisted in the development and design of facilities and operations, established relationships between the school and the community and created a culture that promotes personalized learning, positive relationships, and high expectations. During her time at Hampton High School Mrs. Finn was responsible for overseeing the proposal process for the Bill and Melinda Gates Next Generation Grant. She co-hosted several online webinars focused on creating a personalized learning community, presented at several national conferences such as the Southern Regional Board of Education and AdvancedEd. Beginning with the 2015-16 school year, Mrs. Finn was challenged to assist other district schools in developing the unique, student-centered climate and culture she helped to create at Hampton with other schools across all grade levels. Working independently with principals and school communities who were seeking transformation to a personalized learning approach, Mrs. Finn played an integral role in the successful transformations of seven district schools to the 2016 cohort. Most notably, Mrs. Finn worked closely with the principals and staffs of her own Hampton High and traditional Stockbridge High School to collaborate and share best practices, resulting in a $500,000 personalized learning grant awarded to Stockbridge. 

In the spring of 2016 Mrs. Finn was selected to assist in the closure of a K-12 school in Vermont. She worked in collaboration with the staff, families, school community, and state to ensure all students received high-quality instruction and had a positive learning experience while planning and preparing for the closure of the community’ s school. During her tenure in Vermont, Mrs. Finn started her doctoral journey in K-12 Educational Leadership. 

Mrs. Finn is a passionate educator who believes in creating a positive learning experience for all students. On her off time Mrs. Finn and her husband, Todd, enjoy spending time with their family, relaxing on the beach and exploring all the great things Maine has to offer.