More than a quarter of Virginia’s top educational leaders are alumni of Virginia Tech, and this Saturday will be a reunion, of sorts, for many of them. But they still might need to be on good behavior because the big boss, Roanoke native Billy Cannaday, Jr, the newly appointed State Superintendent of Public Instruction, will also be on hand.

Of the 134 public school superintendents in Virginia, 30 have graduated from Virginia Tech with a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (ELPS). Five others are currently pursuing their doctorates here.

This Saturday, Sept. 16, before the Virginia Tech football game against Duke, more than 40 of the state's superintendents will join Cannaday in a pre-game brunch. The Hokie Nation is well represented as Cannaday also received both his bachelor's and doctorate degrees from Virginia Tech.

“This is an opportunity for superintendents to network and, for many of them, to reconnect with their alma mater,” said Sue Magliaro, director of the School of Education at Virginia Tech. “This is a wonderful opportunity to show our continuing support for our state superintendents.”

Cannaday, who began his appointment in July, had served since 2000 as Superintendent of Chesterfield County Public Schools, a suburban school division with over 56,000 students that has been growing by about 1,000 students per year. In the five years Chesterfield schools were under Cannaday’s leadership, the district went from having less than half of its 59 schools being fully accredited by the state to 100 percent of the county’s comprehensive schools receiving full accreditation.

“As a leader and educator, Dr. Cannaday focuses on improved achievement for all students, regardless of background,” Gov. Tim Kaine said. “His emphasis on accountability and success for students, parents, teachers, and administrators is clear: student scores are up, and every school in Chesterfield County is now meeting Virginia’s Standards of Learning benchmarks.”

This event is supported by the President’s office, the Alumni Association, Moseley Architects and the School of Education. Virginia Tech’s School of Education is dedicated to enriching the lives of PK-12 children and youth, families, and communities through inquiry, leadership, and advocacy.

Sitting Superintendents with doctorates in ELPS or Currently in Program

Dr. David Gangel- Amelia County Public Schools

Dr. Douglas Arnold- Bristol City Public Schools

Mr. Larry Massie- Buckingham County Public Schools (working on doctorate)

Dr. Rebecca Gates- Buena Vista City Public Schools

Melody D. Hackney- Charlotte County Public Schools (in new Richmond cohort working on doctorate)

Rosa Atkins- Charlottesville City Public Schools (working on doctorate)

Dr. Katherine Rodgers- Craig County Public Schools

James Thornton- Cumberland County Public Schools (writing dissertation)

Dr. Sue B. Davis- Danville City Public Schools

Dr. Lois Berlin- Falls Church City Public Schools

Dr. David Martin- Fauquier County Public Schools

Dr. Terry Arbogast- Floyd County Public Schools

Dr. Terry Arbogast, II- Giles County Public Schools

Frederick Mortin IV- Henrico County Public Schools (writing dissertation)

Dr. Sharon Dodson- Henry County Public Schools

Dr. Winston Odom- Hopewell City Schools

Dr. Michael McPherson- Isle of Wight County Public Schools

Dr. Brenda Cowlbeck- King William County Public Schools

Dr. Randolph Latimore, Sr.- Lancaster County Public Schools

Dr. Daniel Lyons- Lexington City Public Schools

Dr. Edgard Hatrick III- Loudoun County Public Schools

Dr. David Melton- Louisa County Public Schools

Dr. David Holleran- Mathews County Public Schools

Dr. Frank Polakiewicz- Mecklenburg County Public Schools

Clint Stables III- Northumberland County Public Schools (writing dissertation)

Dr. William Brannon- Norton City Public Schools

Dr. Francis Moore- Prince George County Public Schools

Dr. Donald Stowers- Pulaski County Public Schools

Dr. Robert Chappell- Rappahannock County Public Schools

Dr. Lorraine Lange- Roanoke County Public Schools

Dr. Wayne Tripp- Salem City Public Schools

Dr. Alan Seibert- Will start December 1 when Dr. Tripp retires

Dr. Milton Liverman- Suffolk City Public Schools

Dr. Marion Wilkins- Surry County Public Schools

Dr. Brenda Lawson- Tazewell County Public Schools

Dr. Lowell Lemons- Waynesboro City Public Schools

Dr. Steven Staples- York County Public Schools

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech is the most comprehensive university in the Commonwealth of Virginia and is among the top research universities in the nation. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to quality, innovation, and results through teaching, research, and outreach activities. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.

Share this story