Announcement from Branson Board Chair Greg Swart

The History of the Schmiedell Family
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Announcement from Branson Board Chair Greg Swart

January 31, 2017

Dear Families, Faculty, Staff, Alumni and Friends of Branson,

We are writing to let you know that Branson will no longer participate in the proposed project at the former Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. After several years of exploration and collaboration with North Coast Land Holdings, we have mutually come to the conclusion that the property is unlikely to be approved for a use that would be consistent with Branson’s vision and needs. Our agreement has been terminated and North Coast will proceed without Branson’s involvement. We thank North Coast for their partnership and support and wish them well in their continued quest to develop this special property.

Undergoing this exploration process has been invaluable to us as an institution. Both the board and school leadership engaged in deep conversations that helped clarify and reinforce what we hold as our essential promise to students and families. Our ongoing commitment to providing young people with excellent academic training and preparation to be leaders in their communities is unwavering. Our ultimate goal is to make certain that Branson remains the outstanding institution that it has been for nearly a century, while continuing to pursue a vision for a school that will be vital for another 100 years.

This exercise was also invaluable in reminding us what a prize our current campus is. As we have considered the seminary project, we have continued to improve our beautiful home. The speed, ease, and graciousness with which the Town of Ross approved and facilitated the installation of our new turf field last year are indicative of the strong relationship Branson enjoys with the Town and community of Ross. We deeply appreciate this partnership and look forward to our future together.

The board would also like to take this opportunity to thank Chris Mazzola for the incredible energy and effort that she dedicated to this project since her arrival last summer. Chris has done an outstanding job representing the school in the many meetings and public hearings that have been a necessary part of this process. We have great confidence in the future of our school under her extraordinary leadership.


Greg Swart

Chair, Branson Board of Trustees

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