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Principal changes in Hillsborough

Tony Saladino and Russell Wallace at the Hillsborough County School Board meeting, Aug. 20, 2019. Wallace was named principal of Kenly Elementary School. [MARLENE SOKOL | Times ] [Marlene Sokol | Times]
Published Aug. 20
Updated Aug. 20

TAMPA -- Russell Wallace has returned to the rank of principal, chosen Tuesday to lead Kenly Elementary School.

He replaces Carissa Spires, 48, who is being transferred to Graham Elementary. Sharron Doyle, 54, a human resources partner, was previously the principal of Graham. All appointments take effect on Wednesday.

Wallace, 45, had spent the last three years as an assistant principal following problems at the last school he led, Bailey Elementary. A district report described conflicts between Wallace, his assistant principals and leaders of the PTA.

Wallace, a district employee since 2001, told the Tampa Bay Times he is very happy about his new assignment. “It’s going to be perfect,” he said. When asked if he needed to do anything to prepare, he said, “you learn, you grow, you improve.”

With him Tuesday afternoon was Tony Saladino, co-founder - along with his late wife, Bertha - of the yearly baseball tournament that takes place every spring.

Saladino taught physical education at Valrico Elementary when Wallace was assistant principal there. Wallace said he always considered Saladino a role model, and he is a strong supporter of the baseball tournament.

In other principal assignments:

Beverly Smith, 44, was moved from Tampa Heights to Essrig Elementary. Replacing her will be Wendy Harrison, 58, who had been working as an area principal coach.

Smith replaces Joshua Hodges, 43, who became principal of Miles Elementary.

The opening at Miles was created by Gregory Canella’s reassignment to area support specialist.

And Cindy Land, last principal of Turner-Bartels K-8, was named principal of Giunta Middle School.


  1. Sandra Gero, a regional search associate at Ray and Associates, hosts a meeting at the Middleton High School auditorium and gathers public comments on what people are looking for for the next Hillsborough County School Superintendent on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019 in Tampa. LUIS SANTANA  |  Times
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  2. Jeff Eakins and MaryEllen Elia, Hillsborough's last two superintendents, were hired from inside the school system. So have all others since 1967. Times staff
    Go to the school district website before 8 a.m. Monday to state your case.
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  9. This image from a Pinellas County Schools video shows an armed police officer running to respond to a fictional active shooter.
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  10. Representatives from the Pasco County school district and the United School Employees of Pasco discuss salary and benefits during negotiations on Sept. 18, 2019. JEFFREY SOLOCHEK  |  Times Staff Writer
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