Meet Our Donors - Lela Gant ’96
When thinking back to her time at Episcopal, Lela Gant ’96 remembers the camaraderie the most. She treasures memories like snowball fights on rare snow days, talent shows and hangouts with classmates in Bryan Library, and movie nights with friends in faculty houses. Those moments, she says, built life-changing and lifelong friendships with the small group of girls who made up Episcopal’s first classes of coeducation.
Gant takes immense pride in being a member of one of the early coeducational classes at Episcopal. Being a student during a time of great change was a unique experience, and she is excited that the School has reached an equal enrollment of girls and boys and continues to welcome a diverse student body each year. Through the changes, Gant notes that “Episcopal has remained consistent at teaching students the same values, no matter if they were there in 1993 or 2023.” Today, Gant strives to live courageously, faithfully, and joyfully, according to the teachings of the School’s Latin motto — fortiter, fideliter, feliciter. “Episcopal is who I am,” she explains.
Gant has remained an engaged member of the school community as an alumna, working as a member of the Advancement Office shortly after college. Serving in this role brought a new perspective to the student-mentor relationships that she cherished at EHS. “Many people invested in me and supported me when I was at Episcopal, so working there was my opportunity to pour into the students who needed me,” she says. “There are students I met when I worked at Episcopal I am still close to now. It’s a community, but we turn into family.”
Now working at American University in Washington, D.C., Gant has continued to dedicate her time and energy to The High School. She is a current member of the Advisory Council, a founding member of the Black Alumni Network, and a frequent volunteer for the Advancement Office. Gant’s spirit of volunteerism is in part inspired by her mother, Lenora, who is now serving her second term as a member of the Board of Trustees. Lenora also served as a member of the School History Working Group and is currently the chair of the Memorial Working Group. “For me and for my family, it’s always been about knowing the impact that Episcopal made on my life,” Gant says, “which is why my mom and I have poured so much into Episcopal now in our adult lives.”
As a new mom, Gant hopes her family’s connection to Episcopal will continue to strengthen and grow. “I’ve made sure to bring Clark up to campus,” she says of her daughter’s early exposure to Episcopal. “It’s important for Clark to understand why I am the way that I am, why Grandma is the way that she is, and why we feel that it’s important to invest in education.” Inspired by her fond memories of her time as a student and by the camaraderie she continues to feel as part of the Episcopal alumni community, Gant is a stalwart member of the Callaway Loyalty Society. According to Gant, “Staying involved is so important. I don’t care how little or big I can give, I just want to be consistent. Whether it’s your time or your financial investment, you have to start giving in some capacity when a place is important to you.”