Shawnee Mission School District superintendent Gene Johnson has informed the board of education he will retire at the end of this school year. Press release from the district copied below:
Gene Johnson, Ed.D., superintendent of schools, has notified the board of education of his intent to retire effective July 1, 2013.
Since 2008, Dr. Johnson has served as the superintendent of schools in the Shawnee Mission School District. Dr. Johnson began his employment in Shawnee Mission in 1986 as a principal at Don Bonjour Elementary School. During his tenure in the district, he also held positions as Associate Superintendent for Secondary Administrative Services, Associate Superintendent for Educational Services, and Director of Elementary Programs. Prior to his work in Shawnee Mission, Dr. Johnson served as an elementary building administrator and teacher in the Topeka Public School District and the Seaman School District in North Topeka.
In a letter to the board of education, Dr. Johnson wrote, “Over the last twenty-six years, I have had the pleasure to work with tremendous school board members, administrators, parents, and community members.”
Dr. Johnson has provided leadership for numerous initiatives including a continued focus on programs to meet the needs of students that encourage high academic achievement. He has also continued to move forward the district’s commitment to maintaining and enhancing facilities that support instructional programs and student learning, including the recent $37 million in middle school renovations. As superintendent, he has managed severe financial and employee reductions while maintaining student achievement at high levels.
During his career, Dr. Johnson has been recognized for his professional accomplishments including selection as a Superintendent in the Spotlight by Teacher of Color magazine, receiving the NAACP Diversity Advocate in Education Award, and receiving the 2009 Award in Secondary Education from the Greater Kansas City Hispanic Collaborative for his leadership efforts to promote education for all students. Dr. Johnson has been actively engaged and served in leadership roles for several community organizations and chambers of commerce including Chairman of the Northeast Johnson County Chamber of Commerce; member of the board of directors for the Lenexa Chamber of Commerce, Shawnee Chamber of Commerce, Greater Kansas City Hispanic Collaborative, and Kansas School Superintendent’s Association; and member of the board of trustees for the United Way of Greater Kansas City. Dr. Johnson’s professional experience has also included extensive work in effective instruction, system planning, and staff supervision.
Prior to accepting the position of superintendent, Dr. Johnson was a certified curriculum management lead auditor and has conducted audits of school districts across the United States. He also co-authored the book, Managing Curriculum and Assessment.
“Dr. Johnson is an outstanding professional whose commitment to our students and the community is widely respected. His educational leadership has been marked by a positive attitude reflecting his dedication to putting the best interest of students at the forefront of our decision making,” said Board of Education President Patty Mach. “Dr. Johnson has had the courage to recommend tough decisions that will allow the Shawnee Mission School District to remain strong.”
The board of education plans to obtain the services of a consulting firm to facilitate a national search for Dr. Johnson’s successor. It is anticipated that the search process will take place during the first semester, in order that a new superintendent may be named in the spring.