Amidst the quiet hum of a Monday G block, I sat down with a cappella legend, Head of the Charles all-star rower, and self-proclaimed “political harbinger” senior Pierce Haley.
“I just love to sing,” Pierce says, laughing. “It’s one of my biggest passions in life.” An active member of Chorale and BB&N’s only all-male a cappella group, the Knightingales, Pierce has become a leader in the school’s singing community. When he entered the US as a sophomore, Pierce hadn’t sung a cappella. He cites the Knightingales as “one of the coolest things I’ve gotten to do in high school,” praising Mr. Horning’s program. Pierce is also instrumentally inclined, which you may know if you follow him on Instagram and have watched his guitar videos (if not, you should: @piercejhaley). “Music’s been a way for me to pair my interest in singing with something else, and it’s allowed me to appreciate other artists like Billy Joel and James Taylor,” Pierce remarks.
Beyond his musical talent, Pierce is also one of the lucky few to have competed in the Head of the Charles for two years in a row. “Boston becomes crew central—it’s such a great atmosphere,” he says, reflecting on the race. “You go somewhere in Harvard Square to eat, and it’s just crazy to see the number of people there for the Head of the Charles.” The school boathouse became our very own fan section for our three boats racing this year. “Seeing everyone come out and cheer really affects our mentality as athletes,” Pierce notes. Sure, crew isn’t the easiest sport to watch, but our tight-knit school knows how to support our peers. And supporting and guiding not only our friends but also the younger members of our school community is important to Pierce. “I enjoyed taking over the reins as a senior and being a guiding force for the juniors who hadn’t rowed in the race before,” he says.
On that same note of leadership, Pierce and Katie Randall, another senior, have reinvigorated the school’s political scene with their club, LEAD, which stands for Leaders for Equity, Advancement, and Democracy (see “Students take the LEAD on politics,” above). The club’s goal is to get people talking about politics and involved in local political events. “There used to be a Young Democrats Club, but it’s flown under the radar for a while. Katie and I wanted to reinvent it and have a more prominent presence in the school,” Pierce says. Hopefully, by bringing awareness about how important politics actually are in our daily lives, he adds, LEAD will help create a knowledgeable and politically savvy generation of voters. The club’s most recent event was the voter drive on November 6. Guest speakers, open-minded discussions with Young Republican clubs, and as always, lots of food are on the schedule for LEAD after Thanksgiving.
Congratulations, reader! We’re getting to know the BB&N community person by person, Vanguard issue by Vanguard issue. Stop by LEAD on Tuesday X blocks, toss a comment on his amazing Instagram singing videos, or congratulate Pierce on his second time at Head of the Charles!