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Gail Anderson Uilkema has been named the 2002 National Superintendent of the Year by the American Association of School Administrators. Ms. Uilkema, 58, serves as the superintendent of the 2,600-student Piedmont Unified School District in Piedmont, Calif.

Gail Anderson Uilkema

Ms. Uilkema, one of four finalists, was selected by a panel of school leaders. She received a gold medallion, a $2,000 U.S. Savings Bond, and a superintendent-of-the-year jacket. A $10,000 scholarship will be awarded in her name to a student from her alma mater, Granada Hills High School in Granada, Calif.

The award, now in its 15th year, is given to superintendents who demonstrate creative leadership, good communication skills, a commitment to professional growth, and active involvement in their communities.

Ms. Uilkema has been an educator for more than 30 years. Receiving the award was an exhilarating experience, she said in an interview, but she believes the award signifies more than just districtwide achievements.

"I really see this as an award for our entire community," she said. Ninety percent of the students from the Piedmont schools go on to pursue higher education and, according to Ms. Uilkema, that's helped make the district's schools among the best in the state.

John Richards has been named the president of the Jason Foundation for Education. Mr. Richards is the former senior vice president and general manager of Turner Learning, the educational division of Turner Broadcasting, based in Atlanta, where he oversaw education-outreach programs.

John Richards

The Jason Foundation is a nonprofit educational organization based in Needham, Mass., that encourages students to explore mathematics, science, and technology. The foundation administers the Jason Project, a multidisciplinary distance-learning program used by 25,000 teachers and more than 1 million students worldwide.

—Marianne Hurst

Send contributions to People in the News, Education Week, 6935 Arlington Road, Suite 100, Bethesda, MD 20814; fax: (301) 280-3200; e-mail: [email protected]. Photographs are welcome but cannot be returned.

Vol. 21, Issue 27, Page 5

Published in Print: March 20, 2002, as People in the News

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