May 1, 2014

David O’Neil to Serve as Founding Head of School

Pacifica Christian High School of Orange County announced today the hiring of David O’Neil as the school’s first Head of School. Mr. O’Neil served as a founding administrator at Pacifica Christian in Santa Monica and brings instant experience, leadership, and talent to the leadership team at Pacifica Christian here in Orange County.

“I look forward to partnering with students, parents, teachers, and community members to bring the unique mission of Pacifica Christian High School to Orange County”, says O’Neil. “Pacifica is a school that takes seriously the task of educating the next generation. We teach our students how to think well and how to live well by bringing together their knowledge and understanding with faith and charity to shape the way they live. Students will leave our campus prepared for the best colleges in the country and prepared for life; they will be ready to impact their community, their workplace, their families, and our world”.

O’Neil left the Santa Monica school in 2011 to serve as the Head of School of Providence Hall in Santa Barbara, CA. During his time there he launched a comprehensive dual-credit program, established a leading outdoor education program, infused the upper school curriculum with 21st century technology and collaborative classroom environments, and received the “Outstanding Campus Award” from the California Educators’ Hall of Fame. He and his wife, Dayna, and their two children will re-locate to Orange County in the summer of 2014, and will begin employment with Pacifica Christian Orange County in July.

“At Pacifica, teaching students to think and live well starts from the top”, says board president, Keith Carlson. “Our faculty are models for our students. That makes Mr. O’Neil a perfect Head of School for us. He knows his field. His founding work at our sister-school has given him the knowledge of how to start and run a Pacifica school. His time as Head of School at Providence School, Santa Barbara has given him the experience needed to run a premier Christian academic institution. But beyond his knowledge, he lives well. He brings proven character and substantial faith. This will impact the rest of Pacifica’s administrators, faculty, and, most importantly, the students”.

“I have had the pleasure of working side by side with David O’Neil for eight years”, says Jim Knight, Head of School and founder at Pacifica Christian in Santa Monica. “He is a visionary, has a passion for independent schooling, leads with authenticity, possesses both business and educational acumen necessary to run a top flight school, is mature and well balanced in his personal affairs, has a work ethic like no other, and knows what it takes to found and lead an institution. He is, from my estimation, one of the top leaders in independent Christian schooling today. Pacifica Christian High School of Orange County is very fortunate”.

Dr. Ben Roberson, currently the Head of School at Calvary Christian School in Santa Ana, has been confirmed as the Principal of the new high school. Dr. Roberson holds an Education Doctorate degree from Pepperdine University (Ed.D) and over twelve years of experience in educational administration. He also was a key leader in the Pacifica Christian Santa Monica school over ten years ago and brings significant credentials and experience to the leadership team of the Orange County campus.

Pacifica Christian School of Orange County is an independent, college-preparatory, liberal arts school which will begin with a freshman and sophomore class in the fall of 2015. Campus tours and introductory meetings to the school’s leadership team will begin in the fall of 2014. “We are going to announce our comprehensive campus plans in a matter of weeks”, says board vice president, David Bahnsen. “The focus on our leadership team has really paid off with the hiring of Mr. O’Neil and the others coming on board. We believe when the community meets the team and understands the campus plans and unique mission of this school there is going to be an incredible buzz surrounding Pacifica Christian School in Orange County”.

Additional information is available at the school website and Facebook page.

For further information email:
[email protected]

Orange County school website (pre-development):

Santa Monica school website:

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