Vancouver Public Schools Superintendent Steven Webb receives top honor

OLYMPIA–The Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA) has named Dr. Steven Webb, superintendent of Vancouver Public Schools, the 2016 Superintendent of the Year. The announcement was made Nov. 21 at WASA’s Superintendents Component meeting in Bellevue. The award recognizes the outstanding leadership of active, front-line superintendents and pays tribute to those who lead our public schools.

In Vancouver, Webb has led efforts to increase program choices in grades K-12, expand school-community partnerships that meet the needs of poverty-affected children, and personalize education through the use of one-to-one technology. Since 2010, the four-year on-time graduation rate in his district has risen from 64 percent to more than 80 percent. Webb also has provided national leadership through the American Association of School Administrators Digital Consortium, Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools, Coalition for Community Schools, and U.S. Department of Education Future Ready Initiative.

“Steve is an outstanding voice for public education. His leadership throughout the district, at the national level, and within WASA comes at a time when we need strong advocates for our schools,” said Dr. Bill Keim, WASA executive director. “Steve’s commitment to ensuring all students achieve their best, such as the district’s ‘Opportunity Zone’ initiative, truly has made a difference in the academic careers of thousands of students and their families. Graduation rates are up, achievement gaps are closing, and more students are college, career, and life ready. We congratulate Steve and Vancouver Public Schools on this honor.”

As the state’s Superintendent of the Year, Webb also will serve as a candidate for the 2016 American Association of School Administrators’ National Superintendent of the Year award. The national award will be announced in February at the AASA National Conference on Education in Phoenix.

“As a superintendent, my job is to create a culture that enables and empowers others to act with focus and coherency in transforming the lives of the children we serve. I’m inspired by the progress we’ve made in Vancouver Public Schools,” said Webb. “I’m honored to accept this award on behalf of our students, staff, and community. And, I’m proud to represent Washington state.”

Vancouver Public Schools enrolls approximately 23,500 students annually at 37 schools and specialized program sites. Webb first joined the district as deputy superintendent in 2006 and was appointed to serve as superintendent in 2008. Prior to that, he served as superintendent of Apple Valley Unified School District in California and deputy superintendent of Lake Stevens School District. He also has served as a principal and assistant principal in the Lake Stevens, Peninsula, and Port Townsend school districts.

A native Washingtonian, Webb holds a doctorate in educational leadership and earned his superintendent leadership credentials from Seattle University. He has a Master of Arts in teaching from Lewis & Clark College and holds a Bachelor of Arts in politics and government from the University of Puget Sound.

In addition to his district responsibilities, Webb is active on the board of the Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest Washington, and the Washington State University Vancouver Advisory Council. Webb and his wife, Lisa, have two children who both attend Vancouver Public Schools.

Washington’s Superintendent of the Year is awarded a $1,000 check from D.A. Davidson & Company to use toward an educational program of their choice. Past recipients of the WASA Superintendent of the Year Award include:

2015: Dennis Kip Herren, Auburn SD
2014: Edward Vargas, Kent SD
2013: Saundra Hill, Pasco SD
2012: Patti Banks, University Place SD
2011: Mary Alice Heuschel, Renton SD **National Superintendent of the Year Finalist**
2010: Steve Chestnut, Selah SD
2009: Mark Johnson, Nooksack Valley SD
2008: Linda Byrnes, Arlington SD
2007: Larry Nyland, Marysville SD
2006: Ben Soria, Yakima SD
2005: Art Jarvis, Enumclaw SD
2004: Carol Whitehead, Everett SD
2003: Rich McCullough, Snoqualmie Valley SD
2002: Steve Rasmussen, Franklin Pierce SD
2001: Dale Kinsley, Bellingham SD
2000: Karen Forys, Northshore SD
1999: Jim Shoemake, Tacoma SD
1998: Mark Mitrovich, Peninsula SD
1997: Gary Livingston, Spokane SD
1996: Janet Barry, Central Kitsap SD **National Superintendent of the Year**
1995: Bud Scarr, Lake Washington SD
1994: Jim Parsley, Vancouver SD
1993: Brian Benzel, Edmonds SD
1992: Kent Matheson, Highline SD
1991: Jerry Hester, Spokane SD
1990: Dennis Ray, Walla Walla SD
1989: Dewayne Gower, South Kitsap SD
1988: George Daniel, Kent SD

About the Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA):
WASA ( is a non-profit organization committed to the development of quality education through professional leadership. Members benefit from a supportive community of professional leaders working to provide insightful, valuable training, support, and resources. WASA also strives to sustain a positive impact on legislative and community leaders. Membership is open to education administrators in Washington state.

Pictured: Steve Webb speaking at the grand opening of the Hough Early Learning Center in August 2015.