Winterset Community School District Superintendent Dr. Susie Meade, who has been at the helm of the district since 2012, announced on Wednesday, Jan. 29, that she has accepted a position to become the new Chief Administrator for the Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency. 

She will succeed current chief, Jeff Herzberg, who has served the agency since 2010, and is stepping down to return to the classroom as a teacher and coach.

In acceptance of her new role, Meade explained, “My love and background is in special education and that’s one of the main roles of the AEA: to support students, families and schools to ensure that all kids have a high quality education.”

With experience in a variety of school leadership roles, including that as a special education teacher, Meade is excited to have a chance to make a bigger, wider impact in schools.

“The work that Prairie Lakes has done in the area of social emotional learning and mental health is also a very important part of the work that we are doing in Winterset, so I felt like I could influence and support school districts beyond the Winterset school district.” she added.

The Prairie Lakes Area Education System serves 14 counties: Calhoun, Clay, Buena Vista, Dickinson, Emmet, Greene, Hamilton, Humboldt, Kossuth, Palo Alto, Pocahontas, Sac, Webster and Wright in north central Iowa, including 38 public school districts and 11 accredited non-public schools.

Meade, a native of Clarion, Iowa, is looking forward to moving back to the area and is scheduled to begin her new position as chief administrator with the agency on July 1.

The Winterset Community School District held a special session on Tuesday evening, Feb. 4, to review and select a superintendent search firm, and begin preliminary planning in regards to Meade’s successor. Ray and Associates, Dick Christie; G and R Consulting, Tim Grieves and Dan Smith; and Grundmeyer Leaders Search, Trent Grundmeyer have applied.

Managing editor at the Madisonian.