Two Area Superintendents To Retire This Year

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Superintendents of Alexander Local School and Trimble Local School have announced recently their retirement. Jeff Cullum and Kim Jones will retire at the end of the school year.

Cullum began his career in education 31 years ago as a physical education and health teacher in the Vinton County Local School District, where he worked for 10 years. During that time, he coached girls’ basketball, boys’ basketball, football, track, softball and volleyball. He later moved into an administrative position by serving as an elementary school principal in that district for four years and the director of technology for five.

He started his tenure with Alexander schools as the elementary principal, a position he held for nine and a half years. He took over as superintendent mid year on Jan. 2, 2012.

“As I look back at my career and reflect, I always keep in mind that schools are not buildings; they are people,” Cullum said via email. “As a school administrator, I have had a hand in hiring many people over the years. I am very proud of the quality individuals that I have helped to become part of our children’s lives. I am grateful for the literally hundreds of dedicated people I have had the pleasure to work with over the past three decades. I am equally grateful for the opportunity that I have had to work with thousands of children, their parents and the community.”

Jones began her career in education 32 years ago. She started as a junior high teacher and then, for the next 26 years, continued as a teacher and coordinator for gifted students. She moved into a principal position for one year before becoming superintendent, a position she’s held for four years.

“Trimble is my home school,” Jones said via email. “I started Kindergarten here, graduated from here and have taught here my entire career. I appreciate this opportunity I was given, and if I was able to help our school, I'm glad. I love our school and community and hope I can always help.”

Like many in a small district, Jones said she wore multiple hats over her 32 years. She’s coached volleyball and academics programs, like MathCounts, Quiz Bowl, Model UN, Midwest Talent Search. She served as Title IX coordinator, yearbook adviser and a variety of other roles.

Over the course of her tenure with Trimble, Jones said she’s particularly proud of the students' improved academic performance and of the district’s multiple partnerships forged with other agencies.

“Recently, I'm pleased with the district pulling together to turn our finances around to a much-improved position,” she added. “During the previous contract, both unions took a multiple-year pay freeze and staff reductions to accomplish this. Their sacrifices have put the district in a far better financial position, and I am proud of this.”

New superintendents have not yet been selected for either district. Cullum has yet to discuss the process with the board. Jones said the board will discuss the process at the Jan. 21 meeting.