Q&A with Paso Robles schools superintendent Chris Williams
One of the most important things in this country is education. I think we can all agree on that. The job of educating is difficult for so many reasons yet there is an army of folks all over this country taking on the task. Chris Williams is one of those people. He has dedicated over 20 years of his life to education. It can often be a thankless job but he comes at it with a great amount of motivation and passion. Let’s learn more about the Paso Robles Joint Unified School District superintendent.
Interview with Chris Williams
Are you from Paso Robles? If not, where are you from originally and how long have you been in Paso?
I am a Florida native, moved to California as a child, and lived in Fresno and the valley most of my life. I moved to Paso Robles in September of 2014 and recently bought a home here.
Are you married? Kids?
My wife, Megan, and I have been married for 25 years and have two children, Jordan and Brittany. I am proud to say that both have followed in my footsteps by becoming Fresno State Bulldogs. Brittany is a junior, Ag Business major, and the captain of the dance team. Jordan graduated Fresno State and is now attending Southern Baptist in Louisville, Kentucky and is enrolled in the master’s program.
What was your career prior to being the superintendent?
I worked in education for over 20 years as a teacher, vice principal, principal, director of human resources, and assistant superintendent of human resources.
Was becoming superintendent a career goal?
Not originally. As I continued to work with students, staff and communities, I realized that we need as many advocates and purpose-driven staff and leaders that were passionate and and had the will to lead and make decisions for the betterment of students.
What are your duties as superintendent?
I work directly with the board of education to set the vision, goals and objectives for the district, and then sees to it that the goals are achieved. As the superintendent, I am responsible for the day to day operations and to ensure that we have highly effective structures and supports systems in place for the success of every student and staff member and school.
What does an average day look like for you?
Everyday varies slightly, but I thought I would a sample of my day when I wrote this:
4:45-6:00 AM Gym and workout
7:15 -8:00 AM Attended kick off meeting with transportation staff, presented and recognized them for their many accomplishments last year, provided an overview of 2015-16 district accomplishments, and highlighted 2016-17 new initiatives.
8:00 – 10:00 AM Attended staff development, visited two schools and visited classrooms, and met with leadership team
10:00 – 10:15 AM Met with staff
10:30 – 11:00 AM Interviewed and hired dance teacher
11:00 AM – noon Interviewed and hired four classified staff members
12:15 – 1:30 PM Attended Rotary meeting and met with county superintendent and community members
1:45 PM Interviewed and hired kindergarten teacher
2:15 PM Attended Butler kinder orientation and met parents and students
3:30 – 4:30 PM Attended Butler new student orientation and met parents and students
4:30 – 4:45 PM Met with leadership team
6:00 – 7:00 PM Met with local community member
7:00 – 7:45 PM Met with local community member
8:00 PM Answered emails and had dinner with my wife
What are a couple of issues that are high on your priority list?
To continue to pursue excellence in everything we do, expand our visual and performing arts program, expand our AP/Gate programs, and to complete the facility master plan.
What’s your advice for people that would want to get involved in the local school system?
We have unlimited opportunities for families and community members to participate within Paso Robles. Anyone interested may contact our local schools, the district office or me personally. In addition, as the number one employer in Paso Robles, we have job opportunities available through our human resource department.
What would people find you doing when away from work?
I love spending time with my family, friends, beach days, and working out.
Favorite things about the Paso Robles area?
The people, community, and the support for our students and schools. Paso Robles is simply amazing and we enjoy every day that we are here.