HEREFORD, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – The Texas Association of School Boards announced that Hereford Independent School District Superintendent Sheri Blankenship was selected as one of five state finalists for the annual Superintendent of the Year award.

TASB mentioned that those named as state finalists will advance to the next stage of the SOTY competition, which will take place at the TASB Convention in Dallas on Sept. 29-Oct. 1. The winner will be announced Sept. 29, and will receive an award underwritten by program sponsor Balfour.

As reported by the TASB, Sheri Blankenship has served the 3,840 Hereford ISD students since 1996 in multiple roles, including as a teacher, assistant principal, curriculum director, personnel director, executive director of personnel, and assistant superintendent until she was named superintendent for Hereford ISD in 2016.

TASB officials stated that Hereford ISD was able to pass its first bond in more than 40 years under Blankenship’s leadership in 2018 to bring improvements to eight of the district’s schools and other campus facilities. She was also noted as being an active member of the Hereford community through a number of local organizations including the Leadership Hereford Board and Hereford Cancer Coalition, and participates statewide on boards, committees, and education-related organizations such as the executive committee of the Texas Association of School Administrators.

The five state finalists announced by TASB included:

  • Martha Salazar-Zamora, Tomball ISD, Region 4
  • Wade Stanford, Westwood ISD, Region 7
  • Jim F. Chadwell, Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD, Region 11
  • Sheri Blankenship, Hereford ISD, Region 16
  • Jose Rafael Lopez, Kermit ISD, Region 18

“The five finalists were selected by a TASB committee made up of school board members who interviewed 19 regional nominees put forward by Education Service Centers (ESC) across the state,” said TASB. The interview process took place in August in Austin.

Kerrville ISD Trustee Rolinda Schmidt, who chaired the selection committee, thanked all the superintendents who participated in the interview process.

“It was extremely difficult to come up with a list of five finalists among such exceptional leaders, and we’re grateful to all of them for everything they do to advance educational excellence among Texas public schoolchildren,” said Schmidt.

According to TASB Executive Director Dan Troxell, the SOTY program’s goal is to honor the outstanding talent that leads the Texas public schools. He also said the TASB is “thrilled to be able to celebrate these accomplished and committed leaders who do so much for our students.”

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