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AASA’s Class of 2017 Marks End to National Certification Pursuits 

AASA recognized the 2017 class of superintendents to earn National Superintendent Certification during the AASA conference’s 2nd General Session in New Orleans.

Thirty-six superintendents completed the certification process.

To date, four cohorts, totaling 87 superintendents, have finished the AASA Superintendent Certification Program. Anonymous feedback consistently ranks the content, presenters and overall experience as useful or very useful to their work.

One of this year’s graduates commented, “I'm so proud to be part of this program. My career and professional life will forever be better as a result.”  The camaraderie, honesty and openness that participants described illustrate the experience that AASA members have been asking for.

Launched in 2013, the National Superintendent Certification process is spread over 18 months and is tailored for superintendents who have been in the job seven years or fewer. The forums, seminars and coaching provide opportunities to define and examine issues that surface in real-life situations.

Superintendents honored for successfully completing AASA’s National Superintendent Certification program were:

West II Cohort

  • William Adams, Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton Schools, Janesville, Minn.
  • Tammy Berg-Beniak, Pine Island School District 255, Pine Island, Minn.
  • Gena Cook Keller, Virginia Department of Education, Richmond, Va.
  • Daniel D. Cox, Charles City Community School District, Charles City, Iowa
  • Dominic A. DePatsy, School Administration District 53, Pittsfield, Maine
  • Jeff Elstad, Byron Independent School District 531, Byron, Minn.
  • Kriss Hagerl, Sierra Vista Unified School District 68, Sierra Vista, Ariz.
  • Michael Hynes, Patchogue-Medford Unified School District, Patchogue, N.Y.
  • Jill Louters, New Rockford-Sheyenne Public School District, New Rockford, N.D.
  • Michael Munoz, Rochester School District 535, Rochester, Minn.
  • Robert Padilla, Newburgh Public Schools, Newburgh, N.Y.
  • Brian D. Schmitt, Genesee Valley Central School District, Belmont, N.Y.
  • Jasvir Sethi, Pinon Unified School District 4, Pinon, Ariz.
  • Jim Vaszauskas, Mansfield Independent School District, Mansfield, Texas
  • Patrick Washington, Promise Academy, Memphis, Tenn.
  • Ron Williams, Victor Valley Union High School District, Victorville, Calif.
  • Ruben Zepeda, II, Aromas-Sun Juan Unified School District, Palmdale, Calif.

Midwest I Cohort

  • Michael Almeida, Coventry Public Schools, Rumford, R.I.
  • William Burke, Spring Hill Unified School District, Spring Hill, Kan.
  • Brian Creasman, Fleming County Schools, Flemingsburg, Ky.
  • Edward Drapp, Regional School District No. 6, Litechfield, Conn.
  • Glenn Faircloth, Lorain County JVS, Elyria, Ohio
  • Alicia Henderson, Bellevue Union School District, Santa Rosa, Calif.
  • Philip Hickman, Columbus Municipal School District, Columbus, Miss.
  • Scott Jeffrey, Lakeland School District, Scott Township, Pa.
  • James McKay, CHSD 117, Lake Villa, Ill.
  • Suzie Meade, Winterset School District, Winterset, Iowa
  • Jarod Mendenhall, Broken Arrow Public Schools, Broken Arrow, Okla.
  • Earl Metzler, School Administration District 55, East Hampstead, N.H.
  • Tom Muzzey, Orchard Farm School District, St. Charles, Mo.
  • Miguel Perez, Jim Hogg County Independent School District, Hebbronville, Texas
  • Danielle Root, Hot Springs School District, Hot Springs, Ark.
  • Patricia Sheffer, Union County Public Schools, Morganfield, Ky.
  • Curtiss Whitaker, Fairmont School District, Lockport, Ill.
  • Andrew Wise, Olympia CUSD #16, Stanford, Ill.
  • Rodney Watson, Spring Independent School District, Houston, Texas

For more information about AASA’s National Superintendent Certification program, contact Mort Sherman, AASA associate executive director, leadership services and awards, at

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