Goffney Wins 2017 Superintendent of the Year Award

For release: October 9, 2017
Contact: Barbara Williams, 512.340.2933
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(Austin)—LaTonya Goffney, chief executive of Lufkin ISD, was named Superintendent of the Year (SOTY) by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) in Dallas on October 7. She was selected for the prestigious award from a group of state finalists that included Robert Jaklich, Victoria ISD, Region 3; Thomas Randle, Lamar CISD, Region 4; Judd Marshall, Mount Pleasant ISD, Region 8; and Jim Vaszauskas, Mansfield ISD, Region 11.

With 15 years of administration experience, Goffney serves about 8,200 students. Noted by the selection committee was her commitment to making a difference in children’s lives every day. When Goffney speaks to groups, she asks them to take out a picture of their children or grandchildren. She tells them what they want for their own child is what we should do for all children. Her strong pride in being a product of public schools is based on a supportive learning environment that envisioned her possibilities.

Goffney, who is in her fifth year as superintendent of Lufkin ISD, earned her bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees at Sam Houston State University. The districts of the winning superintendent and four state finalists receive an award from Balfour, program underwriter. Goffney also will receive a Superintendent of the Year ring from Balfour.

Members of the state selection committee commented that they were honored to visit with all of the dedicated superintendents nominated for the award. Regional winners include the following:

Region Name ISD
1 Arturo Cavazos Harlingen CISD
2 Maria Vidaurri Robstown ISD
3 Robert Jaklich Victoria ISD
4 Thomas Randle Lamar CISD
5 Scott Campbell East Chambers ISD
6 Denise Monzingo Rockdale ISD
8 Judd Marshall Mount Pleasant ISD
10 John Chapman Ennis ISD
11 Jim Vaszauskas Mansfield ISD
12 Marcus Faulkner China Spring ISD
13 Tommy Hooker Thrall ISD
14 Jason Cochran Eastland ISD
15 Wes Beck Early ISD
16 Donna Hale Miami ISD
17 Julee Becker Slaton ISD
18 Amy Jacobs Coahoma ISD
19 Jeannie Meza-Chavez Tornillo ISD
20 Jeff Cottrill Knippa ISD

Sponsored by TASB, the SOTY program has recognized exemplary superintendents for excellence and achievement in educational leadership since 1984. Candidates are chosen for their strong leadership skills, dedication to improving educational quality, ability to build effective employee relations, student performance, and commitment to public involvement in education.

Superintendents from any of the state’s local school districts are eligible for nomination by their school boards. Local nominees are submitted to a regional selection committee, which chooses one nominee to send to the state selection committee.

TASB is a nonprofit association established in 1949 to serve local public school boards. School board members are the largest group of publicly elected officials in the state. The districts they represent serve approximately 5.3 million students.