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Willis Named Executive Director of Elementary Education

Willis Named Executive Director of Elementary Education
Willis Named Executive Director of Elementary Education

STILLWATER, Minn. -- June 20, 2024 -- Stillwater Area Public Schools is excited to announce the appointment of Caitlyn Willis as the new executive director of elementary education. Willis brings a wealth of experience and a strong commitment to educational excellence, benefiting the District's elementary schools. 

With a robust background in educational leadership and special education, Willis is uniquely qualified for this pivotal role. She holds an Ed.S. in Educational Leadership with licensures as a K12 Superintendent, Principal and Director of Special Education from the University of St. Thomas, as well as a Master of Arts in Special Education. Her extensive experience includes overseeing special education programs, developing and implementing curriculum, and fostering inclusive and equitable educational practices.

"We are thrilled to have Caitlyn Willis serve in an expanded role on our leadership team," Stillwater Area Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Mike Funk said. "Her expertise in special education and her knowledge of our district general education initiatives, makes her an excellent fit for this role. We look forward to seeing the positive impact she will have on our elementary schools."

Familiar with the district, Willis most recently served as the director of special education in Stillwater, where in addition to her district-wide responsibilities, she was the building administrator for the Bridge Transition program. Adding to her district-level administrative experience, Willis also served as a Special Education Program Supervisor for K-5 students in the Anoka-Hennepin School District. In that role, she collaborated with school principals, department leads, and special education staff to ensure that all students received the support and services they needed to succeed. Her leadership was instrumental in the development and implementation of effective special education and general education curricula, professional development for staff, and compliance with state and federal regulations. 

Willis' approach to education is centered around evidence-based practices, data-driven decision making, and fostering collaborative environments. Her ability to guide change, build consensus, and strengthen educational programs aligns perfectly with the district's goals of providing high-quality education to all students.

"I am honored to continue my relationship with Stillwater Area Public Schools as the executive director of elementary education," said Willis. "I am passionate about creating inclusive, supportive, and effective learning environments. I look forward to working with the talented educators and staff in the district to continue advancing our mission of educational excellence." 

Under this new alignment, the District's newest Assistant Superintendent Dr. Efe Agbamu is set to oversee all district academics and oversee the secondary principals.

Current Director of Schools Dawn Waller-Lueck is moving back to Winona where she maintains permanent residency, to assume the role of director of human resources for Winona Public Schools. We would like to thank Dawn for her last two years of service.

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