April 2020: School Administrator


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Cutting a Sharp Profile

Every superintendent who earns the lofty honor of National Superintendent of the Year carries a distinctive personal story with him or her. That’s certainly the case with the 2020 award winner, Gustavo Balderas, whose early life was spent in the farm fields of eastern Oregon alongside his parents, migrant laborers from Mexico.

His inspirational story offers testimony to the catalytic role of public education in this country. It’s captured succinctly in about 800 words by freelance writer Paul Riede in our profile section this month, where you can discover a few notable facets of Balderas, superintendent in Eugene, Ore. You can read a more detailed account of Balderas and what places him among the cream of the crop of his profession in Conference Daily Online, a publication produced during AASA’s national conference in February.

We use the magazine’s profile page each month to highlight on a personal level the work of an accomplished school system leader (and AASA member) whom we believe deserves our readers’ attention. Over the next several months, you will read our short profiles of the three other national finalists for the NSOY honor.

Of course, we also welcome suggestions from our readers. If you’re aware of someone in the superintendency with a distinctive back story, an unusual rise to the superintendency or an unusual professional accomplishment, I encourage you to reach out to me for our consideration.

Jay P. Goldman
Editor, School Administrator

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