AASA Central | Leaders Matter
The Leaders Matter campaign showcases school district where the exemplary leadership of the superintendent has resulted in meaningful, measurable outcomes for schools, students and communities.
Leaders Matter; leadership; school leadership; superintendent; education leader; education; leaders, school leaders
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AASA, The School Superintendents Association has launched its Leaders Matter campaign to showcase school districts where the exemplary leadership of the superintendent has resulted in meaningful, measurable outcomes for the schools, students and communities they serve.

Cast Your Vote in the AASA 2018 Leaders Matter Essay Contest!

Why do Leaders Matter?

AASA, The School Superintendents Association represents superintendents at the national level. From advocating on your behalf and on behalf of the children you serve, then successfully pushing for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to successfully working to double the dollars available through E-Rate, we are your support structure. We care about your professional development and we care about your well-being.

To help you with the problems and situations you face daily, we will share stories, tips and tools from successful practitioners. We will share the names of superintendents that have successfully implemented programs you may be contemplating. Additionally, we will keep you informed of what’s going on in Congress and the US Department of Education. We will ask you to share your stories or pose your requests for information or where to find the appropriate resources. We will do that for you because you are an educational leader and a champion for children in the community you serve.

School system leaders create meaningful change for the students they serve and their communities.

Women in School Leadership

Women comprise more than 70% of the education workforce, but few occupy the top leadership position in U.S. public school systems. AASA launched an inspiring video series to provide a firsthand account of the leadership journeys of nine women superintendents who have made it to the top job.


  • Learn about their journeys–the successes and challenges and how they overcame them to secure the superintendency.
  • Gain insights, life lessons and practical tips and advice to help you nail the top leadership job.
  • Discover proven strategies to help you break through barriers and navigate pathways to success.


Featuring: Theresa Alban, Frederick County Public Schools, Frederick, Md.; Debbi Burdick, Cave Creek Unified School District, Cave Creek, Ariz.; Traci Davis, Washoe County School District, Reno, Nev.; Mary Jo Hainstock, Vinton-Shellsburg Community School District, Vinton, Iowa; Gail Pletnick, Dysart Unified School District, Surprise, Ariz.; Michelle Price, North Central Educational Service District, Wenatchee, Wash.; Ana Riley, Portsmouth School Department, Portsmouth, R.I.; Michele Taylor, Calhoun City Schools, Calhoun, Ga.; and Marie Wiles, Guilderland Central School District, Guilderland Center, N.Y.

Early Childhood Education

Leaders Matter in every facet of education, from early learning through higher ed. We are excited to share the following case studies highlighting successful models of early learning environments underway in Ann Arbor, Mich., Wichita Falls, Texas and Yakima, Wash., by AASA members.

Ann Arbor Public Schools, Mich.
Jeanice Kerr Swift, superintendent of schools, and Dawn Linden, executive director, elementary education.

West Valley School District #208, Wash.

Mike Brophy, superintendent of schools, and Peter Finch, assistant superintendent.

Wichita Falls ISD, Texas.

Michael Kuhrt, superintendent of schools.

To learn more about AASA’s Early Learning Cohort, visit aasa.org/early-learn-cohort.aspx.


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