Get to Know Mrs. Janet Harpe, Office Manager

Mrs. Janet Harpe was a DeSales parent long before joining the team in 2007. Recruited by the former director of advancement and president of DeSales, Mrs. Harpe was recognized for her extensive volunteer work and love of DeSales while her son was at DeSales (Stefan ‘05) and it was a natural fit for Mrs. Harpe to transition to the role of associate director of special events and annual fund. She later worked in alumni relations and in 2017 became the DeSales office manager.

She has held many roles at DeSales over the last 13 years, but one role Mrs. Harpe hasn’t held yet is Spanish teacher, more specifically to be Ms. Wanda Trigg, a DeSales Spanish faculty member. In fact, if she could change places with anyone on campus, it would be Mrs. Trigg. “Wanda comes in every day with such enthusiasm and joie de vivre for teaching. I love to see her walk into the door each morning, usually singing. Her enthusiasm is infectious, and everyone knows Wanda is our student’s most vocal cheerleader,” said Mrs. Harpe.

One of her proudest moments happened right after changing positions in 2017. “At my last official Benefit Feast, the gratitude I received from the alumni, friends, faculty, and staff was overwhelming. The acceptance I received once I assumed my new position showed me that DeSales is not just a job - my colleagues were supportive and assured me that I was doing the best thing for myself and DeSales. I am very grateful they gave me an opportunity to continue to serve at the very best school in Louisville,” said Mrs. Harpe.

Fun Facts About Mrs. Harpe

What aspect of your role do you enjoy the most? 

I get to interact with the students every day.  

What is your motto or personal mantra?  

It is never wrong to do the right thing. 

Why should alumni and friends support DeSales?  

Getting a DeSales education is an investment in the future. My personal experience (parent of a 2005 graduate) was one of gratitude for the education he received, which enabled him to go on to college and then into the workforce successfully. Since DeSales is a small environment, the faculty knew his strengths and his weaknesses and were able to guide him on the path to success. Also, to this day, my son has kept in close contact with many of his DeSales brothers. The DeSales brotherhood is very strong and continues for a lifetime.  

What have you learned from the students?  

Look past the outside of people. We never quite know what burdens our students carry with them. Show compassion. 

What is your hidden talent? 

I love to cook and bake, and have no problem cooking for 200-300 people at a time. 

What would others be surprised to find out about you? 

I have a twin sister. and I am actually the quiet one

How do you think the students will remember you?

I want the students and staff to remember how much I care about DeSales.