Board of Trustee Biographies:
Mariam Pahl, Dipl.-Kfm., President
Mariam Pahl was born in Teheran and educated at the German School of Teheran. She completed a degree in business (Diplom-Betriebswirt) at the Universität Hamburg. After working in marketing for a fashion company in Munich, she joined her husband in his international assigments in Zurich, Berne, Stockholm, Greenwich CT, London, and now in Chicago. She has been very involved in the PTAs at her children’s schools. Currently she serves as the President of the North Shore International Network. Mariam and her husband, who is also German, are raising their three boys bilingually.
Kirsten Greco, Vice President
Kirsten Greco is a freelance graphic and web designer. She has a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from the University of Notre Dame and worked for several years in marketing at General Electric and in advertising for Chicago-based ad agency The Weinstein Organization. Kirsten joined her husband on an international assignment in 2000 in Hamburg, Germany, where their son was born, returning to Chicago in 2006. Kirsten and her husband have been involved with German School Chicago since 2008, their son attends German School Chicago, and Kirsten served as President of the GSC Parent Organization from 2010-2012.
Karen Irvine, Secretary
Karen Irvine is Curator and Associate Director of the Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College Chicago. She has a BA in French and International Relations from Tufts University, an MFA in photography from FAMU, Prague, and an MA in art history at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is a member of the Associate Board of the Foundation for Retinal Research. Karen and her German husband are raising their two sons bilingually.
Oliver Ernst, Treasurer
Annegret Harnischfeger, Ph. D., School Director
Annegret Harnischfeger, Professor (ret.) of Education & Social Policy, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL. Prior positions in Education at the University of Chicago, Stanford University, Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung (M-P-Institute for Educational Research), Berlin, Deutscher Bildungsrat (German Council on Education), Bonn, Germany. Her research includes teaching-learning processes, school administration and evaluation.
Shahid Chishty is a German citizen and moved to Chicago in 2010 with his wife and daughter, who attends the German School Chicago (GSC) and is being raised bilingually. Having attended Merchant Taylors’ School in Northwood, UK, which has enjoyed a distinguished history since its foundation in 1561 by the Merchant Taylors’ Company and which was one of the nine original ‘great schools of England’ that laid the basis for the 1868 Public Schools Act, Shahid is committed to establishing a solid foundation for GSC with a vision for GSC to become one of the preeminent schools in the US. Shahid completed his studies at the University of Southampton, UK, with a BSc Joint Honours in Business Economics and Accounting. He has lived in a number of countries around the world and enjoyed a career in international finance.
Rhonda Duffaut, Ph. D.
Rhonda Duffaut is a former German language and literature professor from Pennsylvania State University, where she taught courses before moving to San Francisco, CA. In San Francisco she taught English, history, and ESL at the German-American International School. As the Head of the English Department there, she played an essential role in establishing an interdisciplinary curriculum as the school gained its International Baccalaureate accreditation. She and her German husband were founding parents of Kinderhaus, a German language preschool in San Francisco.
Andre Fiebig is a partner in the law firm of Baker & McKenzie. He has law degrees both in the U.S. and Germany. He teaches at Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago as well as Bucerius Law School in Germany. Andre and his wife, a curator of contemporary art, are committed to helping community programs such as German School Chicago.