About your Sidecar Counsel

Bridget McNamer

I am passionate about supporting adventurous female leaders as they explore new frontiers in international schools.

About Bridget

My adventure story

Bridget McNamer Sidecar Counsel

Adventure has been in my blood from birth. Progeny of homesteaders and an Irish immigrant mother, I grew up in the Wild West state of Montana, absorbing its pioneering spirit while taking every opportunity to travel beyond its borders. After high school, those travels took me to Harvard, where I expanded my horizons and connections, and then took off for more exploring in Egypt (American University in Cairo) and Indonesia, where I taught High School English at the Jakarta International School (and where I met John Magagna, who later lured me to Search Associates). My growing fascination with the links between education and global prosperity led to an MA from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

Over the course of my subsequent 30-year career I have counseled leaders in the education, corporate and social sectors who are seeking to shake up the status quo in pursuit of a more equitable, prosperous and sustainable world. 

I have found my calling in serving as a trusty ‘sidecar counsel’ to these leaders on the front line of creating social change. Meanwhile, I continue to traverse the twisty, bumpy, exhilarating path of managing an intense and exciting career while being a present mother to my two unconventional kids, who are forging ahead on their own unmapped paths.

I currently live in the charming cobblestoned town of Leiden, The Netherlands from whence the courageous Pilgrims set sail to start new lives in America. My daily adventures with leaders take me to places far and wide — sometimes in person, but mostly through my laptop dashboard. To keep my daring spirit alive, I challenge myself to stretch beyond my comfort zone on a regular basis. Recent examples include learning the guitar, belly dancing, experimenting with whiskey cocktails, and befriending Siri.

Confession: I have never ridden in an actual sidecar, but hope to someday.

Happy Sidecar Client-Drivers


Bridget has developed excellent reflective activities that have helped me identify strengths, areas of improvement, and opportunities that I have yet to explore. I feel much more prepared to be the school leader that I want to be.

Kristen Schroeder

Director of Inclusion and Challenge (designate)

I have benefitted immensely from Bridget’s extensive knowledge of international recruitment coupled with her deep commitment to improving the leadership landscape for women. I have happily accepted my next leadership role.

Kristine Stamp-Jerabek

High School Principal-designate

You really moved me along, gave some excellent practical advice, and encouraged me to dream big, too.  Not only are you the sidecar advisor, you are the big blazing light one puts on front of the motorcycle!

Dale Taylor

Head of School

Being in international school leadership sometimes feels like playing in a game without access to the playbook. Bridget gently guides me to a deeper understanding of the playing field, and also my greatest professional strengths for playing the game.

Sybil Van Derhoff

Lower School Principal

Signing on with Bridget is perhaps the best thing I’ve done for myself in my entire career. I’m confident that my progress will be not only more strategic, but more aligned with my skills, passions and long-term goals.

Lindsay Prendergast

Professional Learning Consultant and Past Secondary School Principal

Bridget helped me discover and articulate my purpose and keep a steady eye on it through the job search whirlwind. She challenged my thinking through curious questions and helped me press on when things were discouraging.

Priscilla Leighton

Director of Student Support

Bridget’s feedback and encouragement have been instrumental in my own journey to find a better leader in me. She should be the Sidecar navigator for all women’s executive personal boards.

Debra Lane

Learning Specialist and Education Administrator

Bridget has been my coach, confidante and cheerleader as we work together to uncover new possibilities for me as a woman in leadership.

Ann Marie Luce

Former Elementary School Principal

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