PHOTO: WCS Deputy Superintendent Jason Golden (back) looks on as Board of Education members Eliot Mitchell (left) and Brad Fiscus participate in the special-called meeting Monday night. / Photos by John McBryde
By JOHN McBRYDE
Williamson County Schools Deputy Superintendent Jason Golden was named Interim Superintendent after an 11-0 vote by the district’s Board of Education during a special-called meeting Monday night.
Golden’s selection and approval came five days after WCS Superintendent Mike Looney had accepted a three-year contract to take over in a similar role with Fulton County Schools in Atlanta. Looney begins his new job on June 17, and his last day in his current position with WCS will be May 20, as determined and voted on at Monday’s meeting. That happens to be this month’s school board meeting, and Looney said he’ll give his parting comments at that time.
A few board members expressed their appreciation for Looney’s leadership in the nearly 10 years he has served as superintendent, and also championed the selection of Golden for the interim role.
“One of the things you’ve done right by the county, this school board, is to have built a team of strong people who — a number of them — would make good school superintendents themselves if not now, then soon,” District 9 member Rick Wimberly said.
“I think this board, this county, this school system owes you a debt for that, because not only will we have had almost 10 years of your leadership and shifting culture, you have set us up for this interim period and I think beyond to where your legacy will continue.”
KC Haugh, District 11, indicated Golden was a natural pick for the position.
“Jason has always been very professional, very responsive, the epitome of what you would want from somebody in this role,” Haugh said. “I’m sorry to see Dr. Looney go, but this is a great opportunity to see Jason in this role.”
Golden stepped in as an interim superintendent for a few weeks in the spring of 2018 when Looney had taken medical leave and had surgery and treatment for a tumor in his pancreas.
After the unanimous vote to select Golden, he was asked if he would accept the position.
“Yes, I will accept it,” he said. “I agree with what I’ve heard that you have put a great team in place. … To Mr. Wimberly’s point, we’re going to miss him. I don’t want to lose him at this stage either, but it’s time for him and we wish him well. We’re going to keep up the work.”