John Ritter

John Ritter

Senior Associate

P.O. Box 1270
Nana Post Office
Bangkok 10112 THAILAND
+66 9-6210-6127

e-mail skype

Region: Texas, Alabama, Louisiana, Hawaii, Alaska

Congratulations on pursuing a career in international education! That is a very exciting decision.

Search Associates is here to support you. My wife Susan and I work together to assist candidates who apply to register with me as their Associate.

Susan and I have lived and worked overseas since 1973. It has been a most rewarding life for us, and we look forward to helping you have the same satisfactions and adventures. Now based in Bangkok, we have also lived and worked in other parts of Asia, as well as in Europe, the Middle East, Latin America, and Africa.

Susan and I assist candidates who currently reside in Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, and Texas, as well as candidates of all nationalities who already work at international schools in other regions of the world. We assist many candidates who have American, IB, British and/or other national curricular experience.  Our candidates pursue positions at all types of schools in all regions of the world.

My career has been full and varied.  I completed an initial degree at Claremont Men's [McKenna] College in California, and post-graduate studies at Claremont Graduate School (M.A. in Government), Michigan State University (Ed.S. in Curriculum and Instruction) and Washington State University (Superintendent's Certificate).

In California, El Salvador and Nepal, I taught English and Social Studies before becoming Director of the Lincoln School in Kathmandu in 1977. In 1981 I became the first overseas-hired Director of the International School of Beijing for four years before entering the Visiting Practitioner program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and consulting with schools in Asia. Following a stint as Middle School Principal at Robert College in Istanbul, Turkey, I served as the Head of the International School of Amsterdam, the American International School of Lusaka, Zambia, and Vientiane International School, Laos.

I have served on the Board of Directors of the Association of International Schools in Africa (AISA), The East Asia Regional Council of Schools (EARCOS) and The Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools (NESA), and I've frequently presented at professional conferences. In 1997, I was named "National Distinguished Principal" by the US Department of Education and the National Association of Elementary School Principals.

I joined Search Associates in 2006. As a Search Associates consultant, I have worked at many international schools in Asia and Africa to assist in governance and planning.  Susan and I also represent Search at six or more international school conferences and job fairs each year in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and/or Africa.  All of this keeps us in personal contact with the recruiters at hundreds of international schools.  In addition to our own annual "on-site" experiences and our candidates who are already working at many international schools, we work with over 20 other Senior Associates and Search consultants who learn and share what is happening at international schools through their contacts with candidates, their work with job fair participants, and their school visits. With all of these sources combined, Susan and I “tap into” a very deep, credible fund of information to objectively advise candidates.

Susan is a professional writer and editor who has lived and worked in international school communities for decades.  As a candidate, you will receive her expert advice on writing resumes and personal statements and other ways to complete your Search profile that will present your strengths most effectively.  For more information about Susan, please click on “Meet My Team” (above).

Susan and I look forward to getting to know you as you consider the world of possibilities among international schools.


Susan M Ritter, Executive Assistant

Ritter, Susan M

As a journalist, I worked for newspapers in New York and California before John and I moved overseas in 1973. Since then I’ve held various positions at American embassies in China, Zambia and Laos, from silverware stock-taker to Community Liaison Officer, run community libraries, volunteered in medical clinics and children centers and written extensively on life overseas. I worked as a freelance book editor for years, assisting authors in Laos, Mexico and the United States.

As you apply for registration as a Search candidate, you are likely to correspond with me about how to complete your Search profile in a way that best presents your personal and professional strengths and also meets Search Associates’ requirements and school recruiters’ expectations.  This includes coaching on writing resumes and personal statements (called “Bio” statements in the Search application).

With John, each year I assist at four Search job fairs, and I also accompany John on some of his work at individual schools and international schools conferences.

Again, John and I look forward to getting to know you as you pursue opportunities in the exciting world of international schools.

Email: sritter@searchassociates.com
Mobile: +66-9-6210-6127
Skype: mekongsue

Please contact John Ritter for more information on the following services:

  • Governance Training
  • Head of School and Administrative Searches
  • Transition Planning for Heads, Boards, and Board Chairs
  • Strategic Planning
  • Team-Building
  • Improving Staff Communication and Decision-Making
  • Performance Appraisal Methods for Boards and Heads
  • Community Engagement Strategies
  • Policy Manual Reviews and Reductions ("slimming" policy manuals)
  • School Start-Ups
  • Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategies
  • Compensation Reviews
  • Special, On-Site Problem Solving

Did You Know…?

Senior Associate John Ritter consults on matters of governance, planning, head and board transition, and staff development with schools all over the world.