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New Superintendent Appointed to Albany Unified School District

Valerie Williams will take up her new post on July 1.

The Board of Education today voted unanimously to appoint Valerie Williams Superintendent of Albany Unified School District (AUSD).

Following a nationwide search, Ms. Williams was the Board’s number one choice because of her collaborative leadership style, her commitment to students, and her demonstrated skills in community engagement.

“We are confident that we’ve found the best person for Albany,” Board President Jonathan Knight said. “Ms. Williams will be a very visible superintendent, one who builds strong ties with students, teachers, parents and the community.”  

The Board retained the services of Ray and Associates, Inc., a national school executive search firm. The consultants assisted the Board in producing a profile of the ideal candidate for Albany.

The resulting job announcement generated 85 applicants. The Board interviewed the top six candidates and selected two finalists in late March. An advisory committee of teachers, administrators and parents also interviewed the finalists and provided feedback to the Board.  

Ms. Williams, who likes to be called Val, will leave the position of Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources at Dublin Unified School District where she is well known for her open communication, her problem solving abilities, and her commitment to building consensus among teachers, support staff, leaders and parents.

Prior to that, Ms. Williams was Director of Certificated Personnel at Fremont Unified, a high-achieving and culturally diverse district of 32,000 students. She has been a middle school principal, a high school associate principal, and previously taught English in middle and high school for many years.  

"I am very excited to be joining the Albany Unified School District team, and I look forward to meeting the staff, students and the Albany community,” Ms. Williams said. "The Albany Unified School District should be proud of its many accomplishments and strengths, and I look forward to continuing this tradition of excellence as we work to ensure that our students are successful 21st Century learners."  

Ms. Williams joins the Albany Unified School District at a time of transition for the district. Enrollment is growing. Instructional practice is shifting to the new Common Core State Standards.

The state is implementing a new school funding model (the Local Control Funding Formula), which requires the district to develop and implement a Local Control and Accountability Plan.

Albany faces the expiration of a local parcel tax next year, and despite a state promise that school funding cuts will gradually be restored over the next seven years, economic uncertainties remain. In addition, the district has a variety of facilities needs, as outlined in the recently approved Facilities Master Plan, but only limited building funds with which to address them.

“The Board chose Ms. Williams because she has the skill set and leadership style we need to face these challenges and to keep Albany schools great,” President Knight said.  Ms. Williams will officially take the Superintendent post in Albany on July 1, 2014.

She will begin her transition to Albany with visits to several school sites and departments before the end of the school year. She is looking forward to holding meetings with parents, staff and community groups during the transition.

—Information submitted by the Albany Unified School District
Don Ford April 15, 2014 at 01:29 PM
And how much will this position pay?

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