William D. Leahy

Dean of Enrollment
Bill Leahy


B.A. Boston University

M.Ed. Boston University


Having worked in admissions for 32 years at both the collegiate and secondary school level, my greatest joy still comes from helping families explore educational opportunities. Every student should be encouraged to celebrate their authenticity, to feel empowered to pursue their academic and extracurricular passion and to do so surrounded by peers and adults who will support them on their journey. I came to Exeter because of the power of Harkness and the school’s mission of enrolling and supporting “youth from every quarter” — a commitment that creates an incredibly diverse and dynamic community that is constantly learning from each other while also creating a foundation for our students that will serve them throughout their lives. 

I grew up in New Hampshire and attended my local public school. Boarding school was not something I ever explored or really knew much about. I discovered this type of community while working in college admissions. I found something remarkable in these boarding communities and made the switch to secondary school admissions in 1991. I then was able to fill a number of roles including senior associate director of admission and director of financial aid at St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire; dean of admissions at The Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut; and director of admissions at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachuetts, prior to joining the Exeter admissions team in 2016.