Christopher Saheed
1952 - 2020
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Christopher Saheed of Ft. Lauderdale, FL and Provincetown, MA passed away on June 25, three years after being diagnoes with pancreatic cancer. He was born in New Bedford, Dec. 23, 1952, the son of the late Edward and Lorraine Rondeau Saheed. Christopher grew up in Ft. Lauderdale, graduated Nova High School in Davie and then pursued a degree in education at Tufts University. He later received a J.D. degree from Suffolk University, as well as a master's degree in education from Harvard. Christopher spent his entire 37 year career as an educator at Cambridge Rindge and Latin school as an English teacher, dean, and finally as a principal. After retirement, he was a team consultant for SchoolWorks, evaluating charter schools across the country. He is survived by his loving husband and partner of 43 years, Stephen Nonack, his beloved aunt Carol Rondeau of Ft. Lauderdale, his brother and sister-in-law Peter and Ruth Nonack of Swarthmore, PA, nephews Christopher and Henry Nonack and their wives, dear cousins and their families in Massachusetts, Florida, Virginia, and Kansas and a large supportive network of friends who brought such laughter, joy, and comfort into his life. Memorial gifts in his memory may be made to the Dr. Christopher Saheed Future Educators Scholarship at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, or to the Heart of Jesus Catholic Church, Ft. Lauderdale.

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Published in Sun-Sentinel on Jun. 30, 2020.
Memories & Condolences
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37 entries
July 5, 2020
He was my favorite teacher at Rindge
Banke Oluwole
Student
July 3, 2020
Chis was indeed a special man. His kindness and caring for his students was an inspiration to all who worked with him. He was a gift to all who knew him and we are richer for having had him in our lives. He will truly be missed. He was a wonderful neighbor and colleague.
Kathy and Bill Kroen
Neighbor
July 2, 2020
My condolences to Stephen and the rest of Chris's family

He was a great friend and colleague. He cared for CRLS and each of its students regardless of the role he was in. Many memories, particularly of the time in NOVA, such a special time for us both personally and professionally.

Very saddened by his passing.
Carol Siriani
July 1, 2020
We started by my calling him Mr. Saheed and ended with Chris. I was a student a CRLS in the early 80s. Stephen my deepest condolences to you. He was an amazing man. He made it possible or me to do things in highschool that I would never thought possible. Thank you Chris and Godspeed.
Denise Cyr Stone
Student
July 1, 2020
Mr. Saheed was such a nice person. I remember seeing him in the hallways during my time at Rindge. He was always a happy person and would do everything to make the school safe. He was always a caring person towards all his students. My condolences go out to his family members.
July 1, 2020
I'm so sad to hear of Chris's passing. He was a great mentor to me at CRLS and had such high standards for himself, his staff, and students. I'll always remember him pushing me to think bigger and always having my back even when I came to him with unconventional ideas. He always listened first and always offered guidance or a decision with such support and gentleness. I always admired how steady and calm he could be even when so much would swirl around him. I learned so much from him and I know so many others did too. I'm grateful to have had the chance to work with and to have known him. My deepest condolences to all who mourn his loss.
Ed Byrne
July 1, 2020
My sincere condolences to Stephen. I am so sorry to hear of Chris' passing. I worked with him at CRLS and turned to him for trusted advice and mentorship.
Jennifer Fries
July 1, 2020
I'm so heartbroken to learn that Christopher Saheed has passed away. Mr. Saheed was my high school dean of curriculum for my freshman year and then became my principal. Few people had as pivotal an impact on my teenage years as Mr. Saheed. He was more than an educator or school administrator, he was a friend and mentor. I loved my high school experience, in large part to Mr. Saheed. He constantly opened doors for me as a student and a leader, always pushing me to think harder, do better, and envision more for myself. Mr. Saheed believed in me and encouraged me to harness my passion for public service, affording me numerous opportunities in and out of school to grow. I even had the opportunity to be the only student on two hiring committees for deans of curriculum. Whether it was my leadership in organizing the student-led coalition that led to Cambridge, MA's recognition of a Muslim holiday on the school calendar or my leadership in coordinating our student ambassador program, founding and producing our student newscast, organizing the counter-protest to the Westboro Baptist Church, getting involved in electoral politics, or my joining the Cambridge Youth Council, Mr. Saheed was a steadfast confidant and cheerleader. As principal, Mr. Saheed transformed our school and, most importantly, believed in us, the students. He was the one who crowdsourced our school motto, asking students to envision a new school culture and develop what became our clarion call: "Opportunity, Diversity, Respect." I will always remember, with great fondness and profound gratitude, Mr. Saheed and the impact he had on my life. Thank you, Mr. Saheed. Rest in eternal peace.
Samuel Gebru, Cambridge Rindge and Latin Class of 2009
Student
July 1, 2020
I am so sorry to hear about Chris's passing. I have many fond memories of long conversations about teaching with him beginning during the days of School 1 at CRLS. He was a kind and thoughtful mentor who truly cared about all of the teachers and students in the building and worked to build an inclusive community for everyone. I have missed his voice at CRLS and I am grateful to have known him. I wish peace and the comfort to memories to his family and friends.

Kris Newton
Kristin Newton
July 1, 2020
I was a first year teacher at Nova High School when I met Chris who was a sophomore who spent a great deal of time in the Resource Center I ran. I don't remember very many of the students from my first year, but I do remember Chris very fondly.

I am both pleased that he became such an outstanding educator and very sad that he left us all too soon.

My deepest sympathy to his family and friends.
Louise Costello
Teacher
July 1, 2020
Christopher was a very special man..........smart, kind, witty, and very humble. I will miss him immensely. So long dear friend.
Jim McMullen
Friend
July 1, 2020
To Chris's family, and especially to Stephen--

I am so saddened to learn about Chris's passing. For so many years, Chris was a good friend and a wonderful mentor and colleague, a generous host and a creative educational thinker. Some of my fondest memories of him involved imagining and putting into place English department and whole school initiatives designed to ensure that all students not only would learn--rise to high academic standards, but would also develop clear senses of self and possibility and belonging. Always, Chris focused on the students and what any of these initiatives would mean to their experiences as diverse human beings living and learning meaningfully and productively with others. And he never stopped being a learner himself.

Feeling grateful for Chris' life and hoping that the days ahead bring peace and comfort to all of you who are most mourning the loss of Chris.

Sincerely, Joan Soble
July 1, 2020
Our condolences go out to Stephen and the family at this difficult time. Christophers wonderful personality and positive outlook were always an inspiration for those around him. We wish that we had known him longer and chatted more about his experiences as an educator. May he Rest In Peace.
Paul Meehan/Ted Filteau
Friend
July 1, 2020
Sorry for your lost
Mark Moses
June 30, 2020
Chris Saheed was a gifted, generous, and intellectual leader and he was missed by many CRLS teachers when he retired. I have such gratitude to him for hiring me to teach in the Art Dept. at CRLS in 2004 and for the mentoring, leadership and support he offered to me as a teacher. I learned so much from him and his guidance when he often visited my classes, even though he was busy being a principal. He took good care of his teachers. What a fine educational leader this man was. We loved him so much. To his family and to Stephen, thank you for sharing him with us. He is too soon gone. I learned so much from him and he believed that for teachers, learning was the key. Thank you for and from all of us who benefitted from his esteemed presence on this earth. Debi Milligan
June 30, 2020
My sincere condolences to his family
Dr. Saheed was simply the best soul I have ever met at CRLS. I will always remember his smile, his advices... he was a great listener. I will always remember him as one of the greatest educators. May his soul Rest In Peace forever.
Bernadette Chevry-Désiré
Teacher
June 30, 2020
I have warm memories of Chris from when I was lucky enough to work at Cambridge Rindge and Latin. Such an intelligent, kind man.
My heart goes out to those who knew and loved him.
Joan Gray
June 30, 2020
Oh what a loss!
Condolences to Stephen and the whole family.
I will always remember Chris' sweet smile from his heart.
Isabel Frankel
June 30, 2020
I was very fortunate to be Christophers nurse through his battle with Pancreatic cancer. It was always a pleasure to care for him. I will remember his brave, but quiet way of handling his illness. He was a wonderful and kind person. I will miss him.
My condolences to his devoted husband, Steve.
Debbie Weissman
Friend
June 30, 2020
It was my privilege to work with Chris for numerous years at CRLS. As a teacher, dean and principal Chris did an outstanding job. He always had such a positive attitude and treated both the faculty and student body with the utmost respect. No matter what was happening at CRLS, good or bad, Chris always maintained his calm, quiet, gentle demeanor. Chris presence was missed upon his retirement from CRLS.
With Deepest Sympathy
Larry Poirier
Arlington, Ma.
Larry Poirier
June 30, 2020
I am deeply saddened by the news of Dr. Saheed's passing. I extend my condolences to his family, friends, and colleagues. Dr. Saheed will be missed. His kind and benevolent spirit is eternal.

Dr. Saheed was a brilliant, kind, and wise man who truly cared about people and learning. When I met Dr. Saheed in 2001, he was a welcoming and supportive dean and later principal. As a dean and principal, he always listened patiently and offered wise advice. His perspective on life was rich and insightful.

Dr. Saheed supported me as an individual and a teacher. He supported and encouraged the teaching of writers of color. I remember him ordering copies of Tsitsi Dangarembga's novel, more copies of Chinua Achebe's works, and other poignant works by writers of color I wanted to include in my curriculum.

Dr. Saheed sincerely cared about people. Through beautiful or challenging times, he was present, ready to listen, and to work towards a solution. I recently emailed Dr. Saheed in February. He responded in the kindest way, and I am so thankful that I was able to thank him for blessing my life.

I am grateful to have known such a kind human being as Dr. Saheed. I miss Dr. Saheed. I will continue to miss him. He made CRLS a special place. Dr. Saheed cared about the CRLS community and our world. Dr. Saheed, thank you for blessing so many lives.

Natasha Labaze
June 30, 2020
Very sorry to hear of Mr. Saheed's passing; he hired me into CRLS as a building substitute teacher which, with his encouragement to become a full time teacher, has been my profession. He was thoughtful and inspirational to me and my peers that taught under his leadership. RIP
steven c ferguson
Teacher
June 30, 2020
Christopher was a very special person, and we were grateful to have him as a friend, although for too short of a time. He will live on in our memories.
Marty & Susanne Ellman
Friend
June 30, 2020
My condolences to the family and friends of Chris. He was a handful of my French students at Nova High School who I still remember from almost 50 years ago. He stood out as an exceptional student and a delightful person. Even that long ago he seemed destined to succeed and have many great accomplishments.
Beverly (Muskat) Strauss
Teacher
June 30, 2020

To Stephen

My deepest sympathy on the loss of Chris.

I was a fellow teacher at CRLS and always admired him as a truly gentle man, kind and dedicated to the students of Cambridge.

He was intelligent, handsome, wise and funny.a great one.
Chris was always caring and supportive of all around him.

I was so sad to hear of his death and hope that this isolating environment did not add to his pain at the end.
maureen murphy
June 30, 2020
Stephen and family,
I was fortunate to work with Chris when I was a district administrator in Cambridge. He was a strong, supportive leader, a generous colleague, a kind and thoughtful educator. His sense of humor made many a meeting worthwhile.
May he rest in perfect peace.
Jo Sullivan
June 30, 2020
I want to express my deep sorrow and sympathy over the loss of Chris. I was fortunate to work closely with Chris during his time as CRLS Principal. The students of Cambridge were fortunate to have been served by such a kind, caring and knowledgeable educator. Please know my thoughts are with you.
Jim Maloney
June 30, 2020
With Dr. Saheed and the cast of "On the Road in America" at Gail Stein's home some 10 years ago.
Dr. Saheed believed in me, hired me, and supported me every single day as a teacher. He was very kind, courageous, and smart; qualities that seem to be in short supply nowadays just when we need them the most. For all of the above and much more, I am eternally grateful. My deepest condolences to Stephen and all his loved ones.
Ibrahim Dagher
June 30, 2020
With Dr. Saheed and the cast of "On the Road in America" at Gail Stein's home some 10 years ago.
Ibrahim Dagher
June 30, 2020
To Christopher Saheed's Family,
I am so sorry for your loss.
Chris was wonderful person and a great person to work for and with at Cambridge Rindge & Latin School.
May he Rest In Peace.

Katherine Mahoney
Senior Clerk, CRLS
June 30, 2020
Deep condolences and sincere prayers are extended to Stephen and all of Chris' family and friends. I worked with Chris at CRLS from 2004 until he retired from the Principalship in 2011. He was a great -- no, phenomenal educator and an inspirational and trusted leader. He will be missed.
Michael Ananis
June 30, 2020
I'm saddened to hear of Dr. Saheed's passing. During my time at CRLS, after several other principals, Chris took over the role. He established a couple much-needed protocols that gave teachers/staff a voice in how our school was run and allowed us to advocate for students possibly headed for expulsion. His dry sense of humor often helped in tense times.
Mara Bentman
June 30, 2020
I'm saddened to hear about Dr. Saheed's passing. During my time at CRLS and after several principals, Chris took over that role. Among other things, he ultimately established some much-needed protocols that helped give teachers/staff a voice in how our school was run as well as a way to advocate for students who were headed for possible expulsion. His sense of humor made things more manageable during tense times.
- Mara Bentman
June 30, 2020
Dr. Saheed was a very kind person who made education possible for many people. He inspired the work I do today and I am grateful. Much love to his family
Angelica Brisk
June 30, 2020
Chris although I haven't seen you since your retirement I have a great memory of us at and AVID Summer Institute in Atlanta and we had a nice drink on a great summer night. How nice it was to see you off CRLS campus and having a relaxed night out. My condolences go to all survivors.
June 30, 2020
I worked with Chris first as a staff developer and then as a fellow principal and am so sad to hear this news. I remember Chris as a leader with integrity, compassion, wisdom, and humor. I remember observing his behavior during a workshop when he was a principal working with his team of deans and other administrators. He listened for a long while as different people spoke. He asked a few questions and listened more. Finally, he quietly shared his thoughts, and Ill never forget the way his team leaned forward in their seats, wanting to hear every nuance. It was easy to see how much these seasoned educators respected him and looked to him for guidance. Later, when we became colleagues, I specifically sought out Chris advice on multiple occasions. He was always direct, open, and generous with his time and feedback. Im grateful to have had a chance to learn from Chris insight and his personal model of leadership. I send my deepest sympathies to his husband and family.
Sarah Fiarman
Sarah Fiarman
Coworker
June 29, 2020
Stephen.
I am so sorry to hear this. I so enjoyed working with Chris at Cambridge and missed him when he left. I hope your happy memories will be a comfort to you during this difficult time. My thoughts are with you.
Gail Stein
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