Each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Office of Overseas Schools, and the U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity will select one assistant principal to represent their state. State winners are selected from applications submitted to the state associations.

Because each state’s selection process varies, please contact your state association for more information on their selection process.

2023 State Assistant Principals of the Year

AlabamaMallory KincaidAuburn Junior High School
AlaskaKaren BloxsomWasilla High School
ArkansasJason ReevesAlma High School
ColoradoJimmy ChismHidden Lake High School
ConnecticutSuzanne CoyneWestern Middle School
DelawareTamara McDermottHoward High School of Technology
GeorgiaMeagan WaidWoodstock High School
HawaiiBebi DavisKawananakoa Middle School
IdahoTrent DabellThunder Ridge High School
IllinoisArturo SentenoElk Grove High School
IndianaAmy BooneSouthport High School
IowaDustin SmithNevada High School
KansasMark FosterCampus-Haysville High School
MassachusettsPhillip OatsWeston Middle School
MarylandRichard HernandezPaint Branch High School
MichiganBrian ZawislakTroy High School
MinnesotaTyler ShepardWayzata High School
MissouriStacie SylerMaple Park Middle School
MontanaTamera FaulknerGreat Falls High School
NebraskaRyan HogueKearney Public Schools
New HampshireMichael PerezCampbell High School
New JerseyTom DeckerNeptune Middle School
New YorkDr. Richard MangeriGeorge W. Hewlett High School
North CarolinaChristopher DavisEast Carteret High School
North DakotaGabe DahlGrand Forks Central High School
OhioMegan KristenMcCord Middle School
OklahomaTimothy RayCharles Page High School
OregonJessica SmithWest Albany High School
PennsylvaniaSandra MeansMcDowell High School
Rhode IslandMichael MonahanRogers High School
South CarolinaAshley WilliamsD.R. Hill Middle School
South DakotaBrad HartzlerHarrisburg South Middle School
TennesseeJoy NormanDyersburg High School
TexasLaTrese SmithJohn B. Connally High School
UtahKyle CampbellSnow Canyon High School
VirginiaBenjamin DiggsStafford High School
WashingtonJessica BuchanRenton High School
WisconsinMisa SatoReagan High School
WyomingRandall BowerCY Middle School
West VirginiaAngela S. CruikshankCapital High School


Mallory Kincaid

Auburn Junior High School
Auburn, AL

Mallory Kincaid, an assistant principal at Auburn Junior High School, is a dedicated educator with over a decade of experience in teaching and leadership roles. With a bachelor’s degree in English as a Second Language and secondary education in biology, master’s in science education, and education specialist degree in teacher leadership, Mallory is currently pursuing her doctorate at Samford University. Prior to her current role, she served as an instructional coach for four years, an AMSTI science specialist for two years, and a science teacher for seven years. Mallory’s passion for education stems from her belief in the transformative power of education and its potential to change lives. She prioritizes building strong relationships with her students and teachers, and her instructional leadership creates a positive and success-driven culture that supports academic, social, and emotional growth.


Karen Bloxsom

Wasilla High School
Wasilla, AK

Karen Bloxsom, a history enthusiast, earned her B.A. in History from the University of Buffalo in 1994. Her passion for education led her to take a job as a history teacher and cross-country coach at Nome-Beltz Jr./Sr. High School in Nome, Alaska. She taught several subjects, including World History, Government, Art, and Alaska History. After moving to Palmer, Alaska in 2003, Karen taught at Colony High School, where she taught AP United States Government & Politics, Alaska History, Leadership, and Civics until 2018. During this time, she pursued and earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership. Karen currently serves as an Assistant Principal at Wasilla School, where she oversees curriculum, Career and Technical Education (CTE), discipline, and the 4C Speaker Series.


Jason Reeves

Alma High School
Alma, AR

Jason Reeves is a passionate and experienced education professional with over 19 years of experience in the field. Starting out as a non-traditional educator with a degree in computer information systems, Jason has coached various sports and taught a range of subjects. For the past six years, he has served as an assistant principal at Alma High School in Arkansas, where he has helped re-establish the school’s footing after the challenges of COVID-19. Jason’s expertise lies in establishing and maintaining successful school systems, which he demonstrated during his first two years as assistant principal at Alma Middle School. He is dedicated to improving the educational experience for students and is known for his collaborative approach to leadership. Jason’s passion for education and student success is evident in all that he does, and he is committed to ensuring that every student has access to high-quality instruction and support.


Jimmy Chism

Hidden Lake High School
Denver, CO

Dr. Jimmy Chism is an educator with a unique journey that began as a paraprofessional in a special education classroom before serving in the National Guard. After completing his military intelligence training in Arizona, he chose to teach on the Tohono O’odham reservation, where he taught social studies, reading intervention, and AVID. Later, he became the dean and athletic director at the school. Following his wife to Denver, he worked as the Assistant Principal at Westminster High School for five years before transitioning to Hidden Lake High School, where he focuses on the socio-emotional needs and credit recovery of vulnerable students. Dr. Chism’s diverse educational experiences have given him a unique perspective on the importance of equity and inclusion in education, which he brings to his work every day.


Suzanne Coyne

Western Middle School
Greenwich, CT

Suzanne Coyne is an accomplished educator with over 25 years of experience in Greenwich Public Schools in Connecticut. Her diverse career began as a professional assistant at the district’s alternative high school, where she later became a special education teacher. In 2001, she moved to a middle school in the district to continue her role as a special education teacher. Her passion for teaching led her to become a district special education instructional coach in 2007, where she provided training for the special education staff at all schools and helped to create and implement procedures and initiatives throughout the district. In 2014, she was named assistant principal at Western Middle School, where she continues to inspire and empower students and staff alike. Her outstanding contributions to the field of education have been recognized by the Connecticut Association of Schools, who named her as the 2023 Middle School Assistant Principal of the Year.


Tamara McDermott

Howard High School of Technology
Wilmington, DE

Dr. Tamara McDermott is an educational leader dedicated to improving outcomes for all students. As the assistant principal at Howard High School of Technology in Delaware, she supports teachers in advancing their pedagogical practices through the use of technology. She introduced TeachFX, an application that uses voice AI to measure student engagement and facilitates teacher-led cycles of inquiry to review TeachFX data and discuss research-based practices to foster equitable student discourse. The results have been remarkable, with a 39% decrease in teacher-talk and a 112% increase in student talk, making a significant impact on efforts toward equity. McDermott’s 16 years of experience in Delaware schools, including serving as a middle-school math teacher, school counselor, and Dean of Students, have given her a unique perspective on the needs of students and teachers. She holds multiple degrees from universities in Canada and the US and is committed to using her expertise to create positive change in education.


Meagan Waid

Woodstock High School
Woodstock, GA

Dr. Meagan Waid is a dedicated assistant principal and curriculum director with 17 years of experience in the field of education. Currently serving at Woodstock High School in Woodstock, GA, she holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Economics from the University of Georgia, a Master of Education from Georgia State University, and a Doctor of Education from Liberty University. In her current role, Dr. Waid oversees a wide range of responsibilities, including master scheduling, student awards and recognitions, staff wellness, digital programs, remedial and gifted programs, and graduation. Her commitment to fostering a positive school culture is reflected in her focus on teacher health and wellness initiatives. Dr. Waid’s extensive background in teaching and leadership across multiple schools in her district has equipped her with the skills necessary to drive academic success for all students.


Bebi Davis

Kawananakoa Middle School
Honolulu, HI

Dr. Bebi Davis is an accomplished education professional from Guyana, South America, who has been making a significant impact since joining the Department of Education in 2002. With over 12 years of classroom experience as a physics and chemistry teacher, she has received numerous awards including the prestigious Milken Educator Award and the Hawaii State Teacher of the Year Award. She later transitioned to a STEM Secondary School Resource Teacher role and currently serves as a Vice Principal at Kawananakoa Middle School. Additionally, Dr. Davis has extensive college teaching experience and is passionate about mentoring students and teachers in science projects, and judging at Science & Engineering Fairs. Honored with several awards, including the 2023 Hawaii-NASSP Assistant Principal of the Year and the 2023 Hawaii-NAESP Outstanding Assistant Principal of the Year, Dr. Davis holds a PhD from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and an EdD from Walden University.


Trent Dabell

Thunder Ridge High School
Idaho Falls, ID

Trent Dabell is a seasoned Assistant Principal at Thunder Ridge High School in Idaho Falls, where he has served for five years. With over eight years of administrative experience, Trent has also served as an Assistant Principal at Bonneville High School for two years and Rigby Middle School for one year. Before transitioning to administration, Trent was a Special Education teacher at Hillcrest High School. Trent holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Brigham Young University-Idaho and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from American College of Education. Trent’s dedication to education extends beyond the classroom, as he is a devoted father of three daughters with his wife SueAnn. His passion for helping students succeed is evident in his daily work at Thunder Ridge, where he provides support and leadership to the students and staff alike.


Arturo Senteno

Elk Grove High School
Elk Grove, IL

Dr. Arturo Senteno is an accomplished educator with over twenty-two years of experience in education. His career began teaching biology to multilingual learners at Rolling Meadows High School (RMHS). After serving as a platoon leader in Operation Iraqi Freedom as a member of the US Army 1st Infantry Division, he returned to RMHS to become the Dean of Students and was later named the 2015 Illinois State Dean Association Dean of the Year. Arturo’s innovative work at RMHS led him to become the Associate Principal for Student Services, where he developed the ASK model, a protocol for teachers in response to physical altercations. In 2019, he moved to Elk Grove High School to serve as Associate Principal of Instruction, where he created the principal advisory program 2pPAC. This program engaged students in developing racial consciousness and decision-making skills, and included representation from every classroom to model the makeup of the student body. Dr. Senteno currently serves as principal of West Leyden High School, where he continues to make a significant impact on student learning and engagement.


Amy Boone

Southport High School
Indianapolis, IN

With over 15 years of administrative experience at Southport High School, Amy Boone is a skilled and passionate associate principal in Indianapolis, Indiana. After serving as a math teacher and assistant basketball coach at Westfield High School, she began her tenure at SHS as an assistant principal in Student Services, where she oversaw discipline and student activities. In her eleven years as an assistant principal in the Main Office, she managed professional development, building schedules, and state testing. As an associate principal, Amy expanded her responsibilities to oversee the EL department, counselors, and graduation pathways. She was honored with the District 7 Assistant Principal of the Year twice, in 2017 and 2022, by IASP and was also chosen as the state Assistant Principal of the Year in 2022. With her commitment to education and her community, Amy lives on the south side of Indianapolis with her husband and twin daughters.


Dustin Smith

Nevada High School
Nevada, IA

With over a decade of experience in education, Dustin Smith has made a significant impact on the lives of students and staff. Currently serving as Assistant Principal & Activities Director at Nevada High School, he has also held positions as a business and technology education teacher, athletic coach, technology & activities director at Janesville Community School, and business & technology education teacher, activities director & PLC coach at Osage Community School District. Dustin’s passion for education is reflected in his commitment to his students, as he strives to create a positive and engaging learning environment. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business education and a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Northern Iowa, both of which have played a significant role in shaping his approach to leadership and teaching.


Mark Foster

Campus-Haysville High School
Wichita, KS

Mark Foster, the principal of Haysville Middle School, has been a devoted educator in the Haysville School District for over 27 years. Mark began as a Spanish teacher at Campus High School, where he coached basketball and soccer for six years before transitioning to an assistant principal role for the next twenty years. Mark then served as the administrator in charge of Haysville High School, where he led the school in forming a partnership with Campus High School to create one of the most successful alternative programs in the state of Kansas. Under Mark’s leadership, Haysville High School’s graduation rate improved from 78.1% to an average of 87.3% between 2002 and 2020. Additionally, Mark facilitated partnerships with local community colleges and technical schools to provide dual credit opportunities for at-risk students. Haysville High School has been recognized as a Capturing Kids Hearts National Showcase School for the past four years.


Phillip Oats

Weston Middle School

Philip Oates, the Assistant Principal of Weston Middle School, has been recognized as this year’s Assistant Principal of the Year. Philip has a diverse background in public education, having worked in middle and high schools as a Title 1 math tutor, math teacher, coach, interim principal, and assistant principal. He graduated from Tufts University with a Bachelor of Sciences in Mathematics and earned his Masters in Secondary Math Education from UMASS Boston and Masters in Organizational Management from Endicott University. Philip’s dedication to education and leadership has helped him to develop his skills, lead with purpose, and make a positive impact on his community. He lives in Arlington with his family, and together, they enjoy spending time together and engaging in outdoor activities.


Ricardo Hernandez

Paint Branch High School
Burtonsville, MD

Ricardo Hernandez, a proud Puerto Rican, has always been an overcomer. He learned English as a second language by watching soap operas after school, and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in Physical Education and Health Fitness from Salisbury University. Ricardo changed careers from sales to education in 2002, teaching Physical Education in Prince George’s County Public Schools before joining Montgomery County Public Schools. There, he served Bethesda Chevy Chase High School for eight years as a teacher, Assistant Athletic Director, and Assistant Principal, and later moved to Paint Branch High School in 2015 as Assistant Principal. Ricardo’s passion for education and student success is evident in his dedication to his profession and his students. He is a devoted husband to his wife, Kate, and proud father of two sons, one in college and the other in high school.


Brian Zawislak

Troy High School
Troy, MI

Brian Zawislak is an experienced educator who has been serving as Assistant Principal at Troy High for the past seven years. He has made a significant impact on the school community, focusing on building a positive culture and enhancing student voice. As an administrator, Brian has overseen the development of the master schedule, standardized testing, and co- and extra-curricular activities. He has also worked closely with teachers from various departments to provide evaluations and build staff capacity. Before joining the administrative team, Brian taught mathematics for fourteen years, including nine years at Troy High School and five years at Livonia Churchill High School. He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Eastern Michigan University and an Educational Specialist degree in Leadership from Oakland University. Brian is dedicated to making a positive impact on students, staff, and the school community as a whole.


Tyler Shepard

Wayzata High School
Plymouth, MN

As an Associate Principal at Wayzata High School for the past six years, Tyler Shepard has overseen nearly 900 students and supervises 55 teachers in the Career & Technical Education and Mathematics departments. He has a vast array of responsibilities, including facilitating department chairs, managing the high school master schedule, and serving as the technology integration liaison. Tyler is also a facilitator for the Minnesota Principal Academy and serves as the Vice President of the Wayzata Principal Association. He grew up in Onalaska, WI, and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Education from Winona State University, a Master’s degree in Information Technology Management from the Minnesota School of Business, and K-12 Principal Licensure from the University of Minnesota. Tyler’s background as a Dean of Students, Business/Computer Teacher, Teaching & Learning Resource Teacher, and Adjunct College Instructor has given him a unique perspective that he brings to his role as an Associate Principal.


Stacie Syler

Maple Park Middle School
Kansas City, MO

Dr. Stacie Syler has over 17 years of administrative experience and currently serves as an Assistant Principal at Maple Park Middle School in Kansas City, Missouri. With a passion for creating equitable learning environments and promoting a sense of belonging, Stacie has spent the past four years as a student-centered leader. Prior to this role, she served as an assistant principal for 10 years and a K-12 alternative school coordinator for three years. Stacie’s success in motivating others and fostering environments that encourage achievement stems from her belief in the importance of strong relationships. Her unwavering commitment to championing all students has led her to become an inspiring figure in the field of education.


Tamera Faulkner

Great Falls High School
Great Falls, MT

MTTamera Faulkner is a passionate and innovative educator with 25 years of experience in the education sector. Currently serving as an Associate Principal at Great Falls High School in Montana, Ms. Faulkner has held various roles throughout her career, including teacher, instructional coach, and administrator. Her leadership and advocacy for personalized learning have resulted in the development of a competency-based model of education at Bridger Charter Academy, Montana’s first public charter program. As a school leader, she is committed to collaborating with all stakeholders to design and implement educational systems that meet the individual social, emotional, and academic needs of each student. Ms. Faulkner’s current focus is on leading innovation in learning pathways to engage at-risk students in school through the Transformational Workplace Pathway, promoting credit attainment through employment. Ms. Faulkner’s dedication to personalized education has been instrumental in positively impacting the academic journey of countless students.


Ryan Hogue

Kearney Public Schools
Kearney, NE

Ryan Hogue has been an educator in Nebraska since 2001, and currently serves as an Assistant Principal and Activities Director at Kearney Public Schools. He has also held administrative positions in Broken Bow and Deshler Public Schools. Throughout his career, Hogue has been an active member of numerous educational organizations, including the Nebraska Council of School Administrators, the Nebraska State Association of Secondary School Principals, and the National Association of Secondary School Principals. He has been recognized for his contributions to the field, receiving the NSIAAA District IV Activities Director of the Year award in 2014, and the State Award of Merit in 2019. Hogue earned a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education from Peru State College, a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership from Doane College, and an Educational Specialist Degree from Doane College in 2020.

New Hampshire

Michael Perez

Campbell High School
Litchfield, NH

As the 2023-2024 New Hampshire Assistant Principal of the Year, Michael Perez has a proven track record of leadership and success in education. He currently works with high school students at Campbell High School in Litchfield, New Hampshire, and has recently accepted the position of Associate Head of School at Pinkerton Academy in Derry, New Hampshire. With over 20 years of experience in education, Michael began his career as a paraeducator and athletic coach at the high school and college level. He later played a vital role in creating and developing an At-Risk program within one of the largest school districts in New Hampshire, where he served as an At-Risk Case Manager for several years before transitioning to school administration. Michael’s educational initiatives focus on Restorative Justice practices, Diversity, Equity, and improving the climate and culture within the educational environment.

New Jersey

Tom Decker

Neptune Middle School
Neptune, NJ

Tom Decker is a highly accomplished educator with over 23 years of experience in the Neptune Township School District. After serving in the United States Marine Corps, Decker earned his undergraduate degree from Georgian Court University and later pursued his Master’s in Educational Leadership from Thomas Edison State University. Decker began his career as a Social Studies teacher at Neptune High School, where he taught for 13 years before becoming the Department Chair for Social Studies, World Language, and ROTC. Currently, as the Vice Principal of Neptune Middle School for the past eight years, Decker has been dedicated to inspiring and empowering his students, staff, and the school community. His military background has instilled in him strong foundational skills, such as leadership and teamwork, that he brings to his work in education every day.

New York

Dr. Richard Mangeri

George W. Hewlett High School
Hewlett, NY

Dr. Richard Mangeri is a highly experienced education professional with over 28 years of teaching and administrative experience. His teaching career began in 1993 at Kellenberg Memorial HS, where he served as the Dean of the Latin School, coached girls’ Varsity Basketball and Varsity Football, and was an advisor for the National Honor Society and History Club. After eight years at Kellenberg, he joined G.W. Hewlett HS as a Social Studies teacher, Varsity Football coach, and Middle School Track coach. With a passion for education that spans more than two decades, Richard eventually became the Assistant Principal of Summer School and has held the role of Assistant Principal at Hewlett High School for the past decade. Additionally, he is actively involved in the education community and is the President of the Long Island Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development, a SAANYS Region 2 Board member, and the Co-Founder of the Nassau County HS Assistant Principal Association.

North Carolina

Christopher Davis

East Carteret High School
Beaufort, NC

Chris Davis is an experienced educator with a passion for history and a deep commitment to student learning and engagement. After graduating from East Carolina University with a degree in history education, he taught various social studies courses and AP American History courses at Edenton Holmes High School and Croatan High School. Later, Chris pursued a master’s degree in School Administration from the University of North Carolina Wilmington and graduated summa cum laude. As an Assistant Principal in Carteret County, Chris draws upon his classroom experience to create a dynamic and interactive learning environment, emphasizing academic excellence and inspiring students to pursue their passions and achieve their full potential. Throughout his career, Chris has remained dedicated to overcoming challenges and building connections with his students, ensuring that they are empowered to succeed both in and out of the classroom.

North Dakota

Gabe Dahl

Grand Forks Central High School
Grand Forks, ND

Gabe Dahl is an associate principal at Grand Forks Central High School, where he has spent the last eleven years as part of an exceptional team. With over two decades in education, Gabe began his career at Red River High School as a teacher and activities director. He holds a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and social sciences from the University of North Dakota (UND), where he also earned his master’s and doctorate degrees in educational leadership. Gabe is thankful for his mentors, coaches, and family, including his parents Peggy and Kirby, who instilled in him the importance of hard work. He resides in Grand Forks with his wife Stacey and two children, Thomas and Charlie, who keep him active and energized.


Megan Kirsten

McCord Middle School
Columbus, OH

Meet Megan Kirsten, an exceptional educator with a natural ability to connect with her community. Megan’s unwavering work ethic, positive attitude, and collaborative approach make her stand out in the field. She believes in the importance of developing the whole child and is a dedicated student advocate. Megan taught middle school math and science for seven years before transitioning to an assistant principal position at Thomas Worthington High School, where she served for three years. She then eagerly accepted a role as assistant principal at McCord Middle School, where she thrives in working with middle school-aged children. Megan aspires to have her own middle school building someday. In her free time, Megan enjoys spending time with her husband and two young boys in their Powell, Ohio home.


Timothy Ray

Charles Page High School
Sandy Springs, OK

As a dedicated assistant principal with a decade of experience at Charles Page High School in Sand Springs, Oklahoma, Mr. Timothy Ray is committed to student success. His focus on student interventions has been a driving force behind the development of several impactful programs, which have helped struggling students improve their academics, behavior, and attendance. Mr. Ray has a unique ability to connect with students, helping them turn negative behaviors into positive outcomes. Thanks to his efforts, graduation rates have improved, suspensions have decreased, and overall attendance has increased. With a Bachelor’s degree in Education from Southwestern Oklahoma State University and a Master’s degree in Secondary School Administration from Northeastern State University, Mr. Ray is a skilled educator who has dedicated his career to making a difference in the lives of students.


Jessica Smith

West Albany High School
Albany, OR

Jessica Smith, the 2023 Oregon Assistant Principal of the Year, is a dedicated and experienced educator. Currently serving as an assistant principal at West Albany High School, in Albany, Oregon, Smith began her teaching career at the same school in 2004. Before transitioning into her current role as an administrator, she served in various leadership capacities, including Site Council member, AVID Site Coordinator, Social Studies Department Chair, and sports coach. Smith has been fulfilling the duties of an assistant principal for the past six years. Beyond her passion for education, Smith is a hobby farmer florist and lives on a small farm with her husband and three children, where they raise animals. Her commitment to students and education, as well as her diverse interests, make her an inspiring figure in her community.”


Sandra Means

McDowell High School
Erie, PA

Sandra Means is a passionate and seasoned educator with 30 years of experience inspiring and empowering students. Raised in Erie, Pennsylvania, she earned her undergraduate degree in Education, master’s degree in educational psychology, and post-master’s certificates in gifted education, school administration, and superintendent letter of eligibility from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. Throughout her career as both a teacher and administrator, Sandra has closely collaborated with students and families to understand their educational needs and develop strategies to help them achieve their goals. She believes in the potential of every student and strives to create customized programs and support systems to foster their success. Additionally, Sandra serves as the AP® Coordinator, Distinctive Scholar Program Coordinator, and facilitates the district’s Summer Leadership Academy.

Rhode Island

Michael Monahan

Rogers High School
Newport, RI

Michael Monahan is an experienced educational leader and Assistant Principal at Rogers High School in Newport, Rhode Island. He brings with him a wealth of experience spanning over several years, having worked in various capacities including as a GED teacher and counselor for the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department in Boston Public Schools, Director of Guidance at Mt. Hope High School in Bristol, RI, and Director of Student Support Services at Portsmouth High School. At Rogers High School, Michael oversees the guidance department, staff supervision and evaluation, coordination of assessment programs, and implementation of special programs. He earned his bachelor of science degree in Business Management from Skidmore College, his master of education in school counseling degree at Salem State College, and his School Administration Certificate at Boston University. His extensive experience and educational background make him a valuable member of the school leadership team.

South Carolina

Ashley Williams

D. R. Hill Middle School
Lyman, SC

As the assistant principal of instruction at D.R. Hill Middle School, Dr. Ashley Williams is a seasoned educational leader with over seven years of administrative experience and nine years of classroom teaching. She has an exceptional talent for building relationships and is committed to empowering all stakeholders, including students, teachers, parents, and community members, to improve the educational experience for everyone. Dr. Williams believes in fostering a strong foundation of trust and relationships to achieve academic excellence. She is dedicated to designing innovative programs that enhance the instructional environment and promote student mastery and growth. Dr. Williams’ vision is to provide engaging instruction that benefits every student, and she values the importance of student and staff contributions in achieving this goal.

South Dakota

Brad Hartzler

Harrisburg South Middle School
Harrisburg, SD

Brad Hartzler, assistant principal at Harrisburg South Middle in Harrisburg, SD, is a leader who creates a personalized learning environment that fosters collaboration and relationship-building among staff and learners. In his seven years at the school, Brad has empowered learners and staff to work together to create unique schedules and course offerings daily. This relational approach has earned recognition for the building and district as an Apple Distinguished School, a state-awarded MTSS/PBIS model, and an instructional model at state and national levels. Brad’s commitment to education extends beyond his role as assistant principal, as he also volunteers and teaches at his alma mater, the University of Sioux Falls, where he mentors aspiring educators and leaders. Brad and his wife, Allie, enjoy spending time with their daughter, Harvey, and taking care of their bees, chickens, and dog, Hank.


Joy Norman

Dyersburg High School
Dyersburg, TN

With over three decades of experience at Dyersburg High School, Joy Norman has dedicated her career to ensuring the safety and success of her students and colleagues. Starting as a mathematics teacher, Joy was named Teacher of the Year in 2010-11 before being promoted to assistant principal, a position she has held for the last 12 years. Recently recognized as Tennessee State Assistant Principal of the Year, Joy has taken on a multitude of responsibilities, including dealing with discipline, overseeing safety, organizing prom and graduation, and addressing building concerns. She works closely with our SRO to conduct safety assessments and upgrades and collaborates with school counselors to ensure the mental health needs of each student and faculty member are met. Joy’s unwavering commitment to her school community has earned her a reputation as a trusted leader and mentor.


LaTrese Smith

John B. Connally High School
Austin, TX

LaTrese Smith is an experienced administrator and teacher who has worked in a variety of roles, including special education, elementary and high school science teacher, and assistant/associate principal. She has experience working in both high and low-socioeconomic school settings and has a proven track record of success in implementing comprehensive curricular and student management programs that address the academic, social, and emotional needs of all students. Currently serving as the Mott Elementary Principal in the Pflugerville Independent School District, Ms. Smith brings over two decades of leadership success to the role. She advocates for and guides her students and their families from elementary school through their secondary education years to achieve college and career readiness, creating a positive campus culture for all school stakeholders along the way. Ms. Smith’s broad range of professional experience and commitment to student success make her a valuable asset to any educational community.


Kyle Campbell

Snow Canyon High School
St. George, UT

Kyle Campbell is an Assistant Principal at Snow Canyon High School in Saint George, Utah, with an impressive career history as an ESL and Spanish teacher, Title I Coordinator, and Athletic Director. Raised in Los Angeles, he developed a passion for sports and education from his parents. Kyle and his wife Kate, proud parents of four children, enjoy sports and spending quality time together. With a long-term goal to work in education, Kyle has dedicated his career to championing for all students. His favorite aspect of being an Assistant Principal is building relationships with students, encouraging them to believe in themselves and guiding them through difficult situations to help them achieve their potential.


Benjamin Diggs

Stafford High School
Fredericksburg, VA

Benjamin Diggs is an experienced educator, currently serving as an Assistant Principal for a large school with over 2,200 students. He has dedicated eleven years to public education, beginning his journey as a substitute school bus driver and teacher before becoming a department chair and high school Business teacher. Diggs has received numerous accolades throughout his career, including being named First Class Teacher of the Year in 2013 and Division Teacher of the Year in 2019. He also volunteers his time as a school bus driver and recently stepped up to drive an elementary school bus route, ensuring that 66 students arrived home safely when their regular driver fell ill. With a passion for education and a dedication to his students, Diggs is committed to making a positive impact on their lives.


Jessica Buchan

Renton High School
Renton, WA

Jessica Buchan is a passionate educator currently serving as an Assistant Principal at Renton High School in Washington State. With nearly 20 years of experience in education, Buchan has taught Language Arts and Speech and Debate before moving on to become an instructional coach at Thomas Jefferson High School. She then pursued the path of becoming a building administrator and served as Assistant Principal at Dimmitt Middle School before joining Renton High. Buchan’s unique opportunity to follow students in the transition from middle school to high school has allowed her to create a personalized and supportive environment that ensures every student feels seen and heard. Her dedication to creating inclusive and equitable learning spaces has earned her recognition as a leader in her field. She holds a deep belief in the power of education to transform lives and is committed to creating a bright future for her students.


Misa Sato

Reagan High School
Milwaukee, WI

As Assistant Principal of Reagan High School, Misa Sato is committed to creating a school culture grounded in respect and high expectations. Through her leadership, she prioritizes the well-being of students and staff, with students feeling valued and empowered in their contributions. Under her direction, Reagan has achieved significant gains in student achievement, receiving the Wisconsin RtI Center Gold Award in Reading, Behavior, and Math in both 2021 and 2022, with students surpassing state benchmarks on critical metrics. Additionally, the school’s International Baccalaureate Career Program has grown exponentially, with pathways in Health Science, Technology, and Education, serving 155 students, up from just seven before Misa’s tenure. As an IB Organization educator, Misa provides professional development to schools and supports program implementation. She holds a Master’s degree in Educational Policy and Leadership from Marquette University and an MBA in Educational Leadership from Milwaukee School of Engineering.


Randall Bower

CY Middle School
Casper, WY

With over 17 years of experience in education, Randall Bower is a passionate and dedicated Assistant Principal at CY Middle School in Casper, Wyoming. Starting his career as a tutor in credit recovery, he soon transitioned to teaching 8th and 9th grade science for 16 years. As an Assistant Principal for the past 5 years, Mr. Bower has played a pivotal role in helping CY Middle School become one of the highest achieving middle schools in the state. He is a strong advocate for student success and has worked tirelessly to create a positive school culture that fosters learning and growth. His commitment to education is evident in his dedication to his students and his colleagues, and he continues to inspire and motivate those around him to strive for excellence.

West Virginia

Angela S. Cruikshank

Capital High School
Charleston, WV

As the Assistant Principal for Curriculum and Instruction at Capital High School in Charleston, WV, Angela S. Cruikshank brings an impressive range of experience to her role. With a combined twenty-four years of teaching and administrative work at Capital, Angela has served as a Business Education Teacher and Department Chair, an Assistant Principal for Pupil Services and Facilities, and now oversees curriculum development and student learning. Her achievements include implementing the pilot program for Globaloria with Dr. Idit Harel-Caperton and The Worldwide Workshop, introducing Capital students to game design and coding. In her current position, Angela has worked to intentionally place students based on math skills, leading to increased academic achievement across disciplines and more students reaching PROMISE Scholarship eligibility. An active member of professional organizations, Angela enjoys spending her free time with family and the outdoors.