Leadership Team

Melinda Bihn, Head of School

Melinda BihnMelinda joins us from Garrison Forest School in Baltimore, Maryland where she was Head of Upper School. In many ways, Melinda's life has been leading to this job. Her great-grandparents were French immigrants to California, and she has worked in both international schools in Europe and independent schools in the United States. Exchange trips to France in college gave her a love of language and education, which she then turned into a career. Melinda spent the first ten years of her career teaching in international schools in Austria, Germany, and Portugal, and the second part of her career in teaching and administrative positions in independent schools in the United States. Melinda has a B.A. in English with a minor in French, a Master's in Comparative Literature, a Master's in the teaching and administration of English as a Second Language, and completed her Ed. D. in Educational Leadership in 2014. Her doctoral dissertation research at the University of Pennsylvania on international students in independent schools is a topic that is especially relevant for our school. Melinda speaks fluent German and, as many parents and faculty can attest, very good French.

Marie-Pierre Carlotti, Lower School Principal

Marie-Pierre CarlottiMarie-Pierre Carlotti has taught Kindergarten and elementary school courses in France and the US since 1982. She holds a degree in Modern Literature from the University François Rabelais in Tours, France, and French and California teaching credentials. She has held several positions at the French American International School, including Lower School Vice Principal for the five years prior to becoming Principal.

Fabrice Urrizalqui, Middle School Principal & Representative for French Affairs

Fabrice Urrizalqui, Middle School Principal Fabrice Urrizalqui joined the French American International School in 2004, initially as a Lower School teacher, after working in France and Colombia. He holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Sciences Po Paris. In addition to teaching, he has held different positions in the school, including Service Learning Coordinator and Curriculum Coordinator for the upper elementary. Fabrice believes in interdisciplinary projects and collaboration and is passionate about our mission of critical thinking and international citizenship.

Joel Cohen, High School Principal

Joel CohenJoel Cohen has taught high school physics and chemistry in French and in English for both the IB and the French Baccalaureate since 1988. He joined International High School in 1999 where in addition to being a teacher, he has held the positions of Head of Sciences and Assistant Principal. Joel recently obtained his Master's degree in Education, 20 years after graduating in the Sciences from the University of Compiegne, France. He is passionate about pedagogy and innovative approaches to learning and has presented on those topics at international conferences on education. Joel is an accomplished Blues guitarist who performs regularly in the Bay Area and an enthusiastic world traveler.

​ Aaron Levine, Chief Financial Officer & Director of Operations

Aaron LevineAaron Levine joined French American in 2004, after eight years at Sun Microsystems and three years at Coopers & Lybrand. His professional background and experience include financial analysis, budgeting, strategic planning, change process management, human resource and financial planning responsibilities. While at Coopers, Levine performed significant financial audit, accounting, business development and consulting duties. He has traveled professionally in the Asia-Pacific region for Sun and spent a year at Edinburgh University in Scotland. Levine holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a master's degree in Management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) Sloan School of Management.

Andrew Brown, Dean of Admission

Andrew Brown“Only once in the world, and of all things: 20 years at the French American International School!" Andrew has been an IB biology teacher, IB Coordinator, International High School Principal, WASC/CAIS/CIS Accreditation Coordinator, and PK3-8 Admission Director. He is an IB examiner and teaches IB Environmental Systems and Societies and Theory of Knowledge. Andrew originally trained in the UK as a zoologist. Along the way he acquired post-graduate credentials in philosophy and education. He previously taught in the UK, Spain and Brazil. He is a bold figurative artist, timid mountain biker and proud father of three trilingual teenagers.

Stephen Dini, Director of Advancement

Stephen came to French American and International from the University of San Francisco, where he was Director of Parent Relations in the Office of Development. Steve has 12 years of advancement experience in higher education and independent schools, having served as Director of External Advancement, Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Fund, and Regional Development Officer at various Bay Area schoolsSteve has helped expand lacrosse in the area, having been a youth, high school, and collegiate Head Coach for over 20 years. He holds a bachelor's degree from California State University, Chico, and spends his spare time keeping up with his amazingly vivacious three year old twin daughters, Anne and Louisa.

French American International School

Main building

150 Oak Street

San Francisco, CA 94102

Ph: 415.558.2000


Early Childhood Center

1155 Page Street

San Francisco, CA 94117

Ph: 415.231.5733

An independent Pre-K through 12th grade co-educational day school in the heart of San Francisco. The school delivers a rigorous bilingual (French/English) immersion program through middle school, culminating in either French Baccalaureate or International Baccalaureate program in its International High School.

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