The main administrative building of the new early-childhood education building at Isidore Newman School will bear the name of Robert Merrick, CEO of Latter & Blum, after he and his family gave $1 million in support of the school.
The Green Trees Early Childhood Village opened last year, and its main building will now be called the Robert W. Merrick Family Building. For more details, see the full news release from the Isidore Newman School:
Isidore Newman School has named the main administrative building at Green Trees Early Childhood Village the Robert W. Merrick Family Building in appreciation for a $1 million gift to the School by Robert W. Merrick and his family. Bob Merrick is Chairman and CEO of Latter & Blum, Inc., a former Newman parent, and current Newman grandparent.
Newman dedicated the Robert W. Merrick Family Building at Green Trees at an evening ceremony and reception on November 10 attended by Merrick family and friends, Newman faculty and administrators, members of Newman’s Board of Governors, and special guests.
“We are deeply grateful to the Merrick family for their generosity, and for their strong connection to Newman,” Head of School Dale M. Smith said. “Bob has shown remarkable leadership among our parent and grandparent community with this gift, which will be transformational for our School.”
In his remarks at the reception, Smith fondly recalled teaching Amanda Merrick Seale ’97 and Lacey Merrick Conway ’98, Bob Merrick’s daughters, both of whom now have children at Newman. Afterwards, Bob Merrick cited his family – three generations of whom were in attendance – as the primary inspiration for the gift.
“For 113 years Newman School has been educating New Orleanians to be leaders of our community, including two of my daughters and now six of my grandchildren,” Merrick said. “It is an honor to have my family associated with this wonderful institution. Green Trees is a state-of-the-art facility and represents the start of an excellent educational experience for all of our children and grandchildren.”
In gratitude for the gift, Newman will rename the main administrative building at Green Trees for the Merrick Family. Now in its second year of operation, Green Trees is Newman’s new division for early education, enrolling children ages six weeks to four years. Green Trees began its inaugural year in 2015 fully enrolled, and this year has 169 students in part-time and full-time programs.
Blending traditional and contemporary architecture, the Green Trees facility is a warm and welcoming “village” for early education. Green Trees features 12 classrooms, indoor and outdoor play areas, and flexible spaces for teaching and learning. At the heart of the Green Trees curriculum is an active learning model supported by positive adult-child interactions, a stimulating environment filled with natural, repurposed, and found materials, and dynamic assessment and observation of each child.