Sheila "Skip" Nowell
The Nowell Leadership Academy was named for Sheila "Skip" Nowell.
Sheila “Skip” Nowell was born in New York City, graduated from Music and Art High School for the Performing Arts, attended the University of Wisconsin, and then resumed her musical studies at the Juilliard in New York. In 1946 she married John Nowell. They moved to Rehoboth, Massachusetts where they raised their four children, and were active in town politics; both served elected terms on the School Committee. She then became Music Director at the Gordon School, until she was appointed to direct the first Rhode Island Head Start program located in South Providence. She administered that program for five years until she was asked by The Junior League to organize and direct Volunteers in Action. In 1973 she was elected Executive Director of the YWCA of Northern Rhode Island, whose board encouraged her many innovative programs. PIP (Parenting in Progress) was designed for school age adolescents to study for a G.E.D. or a high school diploma, while learning parenting skills and receiving day care for their infants in a secure and supportive environment. Retiring in 1993, Skip was approached by the YWCA Retirement Fund to be a Fund Field Representative, serving all YWCAs in the United States as a liaison between YWCA employees and the Fund. She recently retired from that position. Skip presently volunteers as Artistic Director of Arts in the Village, a Rehoboth classical concert series now in its 12th season.