July 1, 2023
Today, it is with great pleasure that I officially join the Piedmont Unified School District (PUSD) team as your new Superintendent. I recognize the profound importance of this role, and the trust you have placed in me, and I am fully committed to ensuring the highest quality educational experience where every student feels a sense of belonging in order to achieve and thrive to the fullest potential. And, I confess, I am simply thrilled to get started after my appointment at the March 8th Board meeting. It is wonderful to finally be here.
I am excited to share an update on our new leadership team, which began under Dr. Donald Evans and finalized at our most recent Board meeting. We are so fortunate to have Melissa Daymond as our new Principal at Wildwood, Ariel Dolowich as our new Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services, and Joseph Marik as our new Assistant Principal of Piedmont High School. We have also promoted Irma Muñoz to Principal of Millennium High School and Jean Takazawa with an expanded role as our new DEIB Director. My thanks to Dr. Evans and staff for our collaboration on these leadership changes over the last several months. I am confident in our new team’s ability to build upon the PUSD tradition of excellence.
Over the next several months, I look forward to connecting with our school community to listen and learn how we best serve our students. You may already know that serving students is my “north star,” and I am a believer in creating an environment where honest and open communication is valued, and all voices are heard. To this end, I look forward to working with our Board, students, staff, parents and community members. We are better together, and it is, indeed, joyful work.
I would also like to acknowledge the opportunities and challenges ahead. I have already begun the process of taking a deep dive into our district data in all areas: academic achievement, social-emotional wellness, financial and other key data. While I can see so many positives and opportunities from our data points, I can also see that we have work to do in some areas, with heightened attention on our budget. To that end, I look forward to working with our Board and school community to develop a strategic plan that builds on the work our Board started last year with our new Vision, Mission and Core Values. Defining our priorities will ultimately drive our success, and our students deserve nothing less. I will close by sharing my deep sense of optimism about our work together to provide the finest education for our students. Let’s begin.
Jennifer Hawn, Ed.D.