Leadership shifts: 4 superintendents split with districts as others head for retirement

Within the last week, at least 10 superintendents have announced plans to retire during the current school year.

Superintendents for Hamilton Southeastern Schools and St. Louis Park Public Schools resigned abruptly as an Arizona school board voted its leader out after getting sued by the state. Also within the last week, at least 10 superintendents have recently announced plans to retire during this school year.

Yvonne Stokes
Yvonne Stokes

Yvonne Stokes resigned, effective immediately last Wednesday, after serving just over two years as superintendent of Hamilton Southeastern Schools in the Indianapolis suburbs. While the reasons for Stokes’ departure were not clear, she said the “future is bright” for Hamilton Southeastern Schools, according to a statement on the district’s website.

“The opportunity to serve as superintendent was one I never took lightly,” Stokes added. “As this shift in leadership commences, I am committed to supporting the district and feel confident that our staff, students and families will be in capable hands.” Assistant Superintendent Matt Kegley was named interim superintendent to replace Stokes, who previously served as an assistant superintendent for the School Town of Munster.

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In Minnesota, Astein Osei has resigned after six years as superintendent of St. Louis Park Public Schools in the Twin Cities region. The school board did not give reasons for the departure of Osei, who previously held administrative positions in Osseo Area Public Schools and St. Paul Public Schools.

Kristi Wilson
Kristi Wilson

Kristi Wilson has been voted out by the school board after 10 years as superintendent at Arizona’s Buckeye Elementary School District, ABC 15 Arizona reported. Local reports did not give a cause but in January, Wilson and the Buckeye Elementary School District were sued by the state of Arizona over $1.7 million in “additional compensation” the now-former superintendent had received in recent years.

At the time, Buckeye’s school board rejected the state’s claims, insisting it had the authority to pay Wilson for retirement credits and unused leave.

Finally, Ann Arbor Public Schools and Superintendent Jeanice Kerr Swift have reached an agreement for the longtime leader to resign on Dec. 31 after 10 years in the role. The deal came after “weeks of controversy” stemming from special education issues although Swift maintained the support of the teacher’s union, The Detroit News reported

Planned retirement and a few new hires

At least 10 superintendents have recently announced plans to retire this school year, including:

  • Samuel Bogdanove, Ashland School District (Oregon), will retire at the end of the school year.
  • Clark Ealy, Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD (Texas), retires Jan. 31. Led district for four years.
  • Michael Galvin, Metropolitan School District of North Posey County (Indiana) will retire on Sept. 29.
  • Brian Hightower, Cherokee County School District (Georgia), retires at the end of the 2023-24 school year. Hired in 2016.
  • Damian LaCroix, Howard-Suamico School District (Wisconsin). Retires June 30. Held post for 19 years; will be succeeded by Deputy Superintendent Mark Smith.
  • Troy Mircovich, Ingleside ISD (Texas).
  • Jill Mortimer, Westwood Regional School District (New Jersey), will retire in 2024. She took the full-time post last year, and was previously superintendent of Moonachie School District and Hawthorne Public Schools, according to NorthJersey.com.
  • Jute Wilson, Lamar County Schools (Georgia), retires Dec. 1.
  • David Young, Abilene ISD (Texas), retires at the end of the 2023-24 school year. Young graduated from Abilene ISD, became its leader in 2015 and served as superintendent of Pampa ISD from 2012-2015.

Two districts have chosen their next leaders within the last week. Lynnette Brunger will take over as superintendent of Taconic Hills Central School District in New York on Oct. 10. Brunger is currently the assistant superintendent at Liberty Central School District, also in New York. In New Jersey, Nelyda Perez is now superintendent of the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District.

Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick is a life-long journalist. Prior to writing for District Administration he worked in daily news all over the country, from the NYC suburbs to the Rocky Mountains, Silicon Valley and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He's also in a band.

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