Chauvin Trial Verdict Statement
This verdict affirms that justice, while sometimes slow to arrive, is possible.
Dear Students, Parents, and Employees,
On Tuesday, April 20, former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of second-degree murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter by a jury of his peers for the killing of George Floyd. The jurors deliberated for ten hours over two days before rendering their unanimous verdict. This verdict affirms that justice, while sometimes slow to arrive, is possible.
For many, the State of Minnesota v. Derek Michael Chauvin has been a stark, heart-wrenching reminder of the suffering one human being can inflict on another. It has also been a painful reminder that racism still permeates and threatens the everyday lives of marginalized groups in this country.
And yet, this case has also affirmed what is good and best in us. Last June, shortly after the death of George Floyd, I wrote, “There has been a seismic shift in the call to finally and definitively end systemic racism and privilege.” Nearly a year later, Pomfret remains committed to this work, work that challenges us to acknowledge and address a history that has not always been kind to BIPOC students and faculty on the Hilltop.
Fortunately, that history is beginning to change. This year, the work of Co-directors of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Jillian Forgue and tc Hanmer, has been deeply impactful, providing an essential foundation for the work to come. Just last week, I announced the hiring of Dr. Coretta McCarter as our new Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Cory is an accomplished school administrator and diversity practitioner who brings a deep well of life experience and dynamic warmth to the work before us. She is looking forward to partnering with Jillian, tc, and all the members of our community to ensure that every member of the Pomfret School community feels they truly belong.
Our School values call on us to champion diversity and inclusion, seeking to understand and be understood, and to care for each other and for ourselves. We will continue to live those values as we strive to do everything possible to become a more compassionate, inclusive, and anti-racist institution. Our resolve is strengthened today.
Tim Richards P ’15
Head of School
Chair, Board of Trustees