District welcomes administrative leaders into new roles

posted May 1, 2015, 4:06 PM by Tianna Hubbenette
The Director of Human Resources position in Sherwood School District became open last fall.  The District offered the opportunity to current administrator staff who were interested in the interim position for the remainder of the school year.  Mr. Steve Emmert, principal of Laurel Ridge Middle School, rose to the challenge and took on the Interim HR Director role in December 2014, leading the Human Resources and Fiscal Departments during the transition.

Based on his exemplary performance, to include strengths in relationship-building, advocacy for staff and students, and always upholding and modeling the values of the District, Superintendent Heather Cordie has announced that Mr. Emmert was offered and has accepted the permanent Human Resources Director position for the Sherwood School District.  Cordie stated, “Mr. Emmert is a strong, servant leader who cares a great deal about supporting the wonderful work that takes place in our schools; nurturing relationships built on trust and transparency is an integral part of his wiring.  He is eager to take on new challenges and I am very excited to welcome him into this new chapter of his career!”

Mr. Emmert was hired by Sherwood School District in July 2006, serving first as Sherwood Middle School’s Assistant Principal for two years and Principal for one year, later becoming Principal at Laurel Ridge Middle School in 2009.  Emmert came to Sherwood with twelve years of experience from Sweet Home School District where he was a teacher, an assistant principal, athletic director, and coach at the middle and high school levels.  When asked how he felt about this new opportunity, Mr. Emmert said, "I have always believed that it's best to live one day at a time, seeking new opportunities and leaning into them when they present themselves.  Change brings new growth.  Although I will miss working daily with the amazing staff and students at Laurel Ridge, I'm excited about the learning that comes with this life chapter.”

With Steve Emmert’s interim coverage in the District Office since December, the Laurel Ridge Middle School has been led by its Associate Principal,
Penny Salm, in the Interim Principal position.  Ms. Salm has demonstrated strength in leadership and commitment to students and staff throughout her career in Sherwood, and her skills were highlighted during this year’s interim role.  The Sherwood School District has offered Ms. Salm the opportunity to lead Laurel Ridge on a permanent status as its new principal.  Salm said, "It has been such a joy to work at LRMS the past two years.  I am excited for this next step in my career and consider it an honor to continue serving the Laurel Ridge students, staff and families in my new role as principal."  

Ms. Salm has been with the Sherwood School District for 19 years, first hired as a classroom teacher at Sherwood Middle School.  After teaching at SMS and serving as Instructional Coach and School Counselor, she joined Laurel Ridge Middle School staff as a teacher on special assignment (TOSA), later becoming Associate Principal in the 2012-13 school year.  “We are lucky to have Ms. Salm on our administrative team and I know the Laurel Ridge community will welcome and support her as she is a wonderful leader that places her students and staff at the top of her priorities,” said Superintendent Heather Cordie.

The Sherwood School District will also welcome Gary Bennett, Chief Academic Officer for the District, as its Assistant Superintendent.  Prior to joining the Sherwood School District, Mr. Bennett was a teacher on special assignment (TOSA) in Tigard-Tualatin School District.  He was hired in 2009 as the Sherwood Middle School principal.  In 2012, Bennett joined the executive team of the District as its Chief Academic Officer. 

Highly respected among administrator peers and district staff, Bennett is an exceptional leader and top-notch steward on behalf of Sherwood students.  “Mr. Bennett has a very unique, diverse set of skills.  He is a strong instructional leader who oversees the teaching and learning initiatives in our district, while also being very adept at leading a myriad of other topics and challenges that are directed his way.  His strategic thinking, coupled with his service-minded approach to leadership encourage staff and colleagues alike to seek his coaching.”  Reflecting on the career opportunity, Bennett stated, “I have been fortunate to work among talented leaders in Sherwood School District and to be part of the great work that takes place district-wide.  I am honored to continue to partner with Superintendent Cordie and the District Office team in a new role.”