Hillsborough County Schools Superintendent Addison Davis announced another round of executive appointments on Wednesday, rounding out the list of 14 that were released earlier in the month.
“After review of their historical impact in education and careful consideration, these individuals have been selected to assist with improving teaching and learning within our school district,” Davis wrote in a letter to all district staff. “Effective June 1st, these individuals will begin their journey in supporting you with the school improvement process.”
- Previous: Addison Davis’s “Dream Team”
Most of the appointments were “region superintendents,” a new position for a supervisor who works under the direction of a grade-level chief. Davis included detailed biographies in his email, which can be seen here.
In the elementary schools, reporting to Jennifer Yarde, Davis appointed:
- Frankye Bulmer, a 15-year district employee. Bulmer began her career as a teacher at Clair-Mel Elementary School. She served most recently as principal of nearby Palm River Elementary, which improved from a D to a C. Previously, she brought Dunbar Elementary from an F to a C.
- Jaime Gerding, principal of Booker T. Washington Elementary. Once the lowest performing elementary school in the district, Washington earned two consecutive “C” school grades under Gerding’s leadership and was hailed as a turnaround model for the Florida Department of Education’s Southwest Region.
- Rick Grayes, a onetime elementary school teacher who rose to principal coach. Grayes’ administrative career started in 2005 when he was an assistant principal of Clair Mel Elementary. In 2009, he was appointed as the principal of Summerfield Crossings Elementary. He later returned to Clair Mel as principal. Under his leadership, the school improved 124 points as measured by the Florida grading system and was taken off the state’s lowest 300 list.
- Lacy Healy, who comes to Hillsborough County Public Schools after serving as principal of Thunderbolt Elementary in Clay County. Thunderbolt was designated a School of Excellence for three consecutive years by the Florida Department of Education. Prior to her work in Clay County, Mrs. Healy served as a principal in Duval County Public Schools for nine years.
- Julie Scardino was Principal at Egypt Lake Elementary School. For 25 years she has served low-income communities, including the principalship at Sulphur Springs Elementary and Edison Elementary. At Sulphur Springs she raised the school grade from an F to a D after one year, and to a C the following year.
In the middle school region, reporting to chief Marcos Murillo, are:
- Sue Burkett, now principal of Bloomingdale High, with past leadership experience at Riverview High and Burns Middle; and teaching experience at Plant City and Durant High.
- Richard Ledgister, who built his career in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. In Palm Beach he was executive director for University Preparatory Academy, where he led the establishment of a Junior Engineering Program to introduce minority and disadvantaged students to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields.
For High Schools, reporting to Tracolya Clinch, Davis named:
- Gary Brady, the principal of Hillsborough High School since 2015. Brady has also held administrative positions at Strawberry Crest and Robinson high schools.
- Owen Young, best known for overseeing improvements at Middleton High School, which was in danger of a state shut-down before his arrival. Young launched the district’s Priority Schools initiative under Superintendent Jeff Eakins and served most recently as an area superintendent.
Davis also named region superintendents to the Transformation Network, which replaced the Achievement Schools project with fewer schools.
For these assignments, he chose:
- Lindsey Star Connor, a Duval County educator with a strong record of improving the schools she led.
- Rachael O’Dea, a principal who improved student results at Forest Hills Elementary School. In 2019 she was named Hillsborough County Principal of the Year.
Davis also appointed longtime district official Larry Sykes as the district’s Executive Director for Climate and Culture. Most recently a leader in the Achievement Schools program, Sykes rose as high as Chief of Schools under the administration of Superintendent Jeff Eakins.
The Tampa Bay Times has requested the salaries of all of these individuals, and those named to cabinet-level positions on May 14. We will publish them when they are made available.