Kent School District's Vargas named state Superintendent of the Year

Kent School District Superintendent Edward Lee Vargas. - COURTESY PHOTO
Kent School District Superintendent Edward Lee Vargas.
— image credit: COURTESY PHOTO

Superintendent Edward Lee Vargas of the Kent School District (KSD) was named Friday the 2014 Superintendent of the Year by the Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA).

The announcement was made at WASA’s Superintendents Component meeting in Bellevue, according to a WASA media release. This program is designed to recognize the outstanding leadership of active, front-line superintendents and pay tribute to those who lead our public schools. Vargas will be a finalist for the 2014 National Superintendent of the Year award, to be announced at the AASA National Conference on Education in Nashville, Tenn., in February.

Upon learning of the award, Vargas said in a prepared statement:

“I am very grateful and tremendously honored to have been selected as Washington's 2014 Superintendent of the Year, for I am among an outstanding group of fellow superintendents currently serving the educational needs of the students and families in Washington State. Leadership is a team sport, and this would not have been possible without the exemplary teamwork of our school board, leadership team, classroom teachers, support staff, district partners, and our entire school community that has made my work as their superintendent a privilege, joy, and a tremendous source of pride. This honor is really about all of us in the Kent School District and reflects the hard work and dedication of many in our community.”

Vargas has served as superintendent of the Kent School District since 2009. KSD has received numerous local, state, national and international awards. The district is designated as a Microsoft International Best Practices Site for Technology, partner in the Innovative Schools World Tour, and member of the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools.

Vargas has also served as superintendent in large urban school districts in California, New Mexico, and Texas. He was named California Superintendent of the Year in 2006 and was recruited to the Stupski Foundation as a Superintendent in Residence where he worked coaching other system leaders around the country until his appointment to the Kent School District.

Vargas is a nationally recognized speaker on leadership for creating high performing school systems grounded in equity and excellence for all, Distinguished Lecturer on “School System Readiness to Transform,” keynoting at numerous state and national conferences including the National Blue Ribbon Schools Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C., on 21st Century Skills, speaking at USA-China Educational Symposiums in China, and presenting at Microsoft’s Global Forum on Technology in Prague, Czech Republic in 2012.

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