McAllen schools superintendent in the running for top state award

McAllen ISD Superintendent J.A. Gonzalez is in the running for state Superintendent of the Year award, the Texas Association of School Boards announced Monday.

Gonzalez was nominated for the award and selected as one of five finalists from across the state, hailing from districts in Corpus Christi, Newton, Denton and Alpine in addition to McAllen.

“On behalf of the McAllen School Board and our district staff, I would like to congratulate Dr. Gonzalez for this incredible honor, and it is (well-deserved),” School Board President Conrado Alvarado wrote in a statement released by the school district Tuesday. “He has shown tremendous leadership and foresight during this time of incredible challenge, and our community’s children has benefited from his leadership.”

According to the release, a state selection committee interviewed regional winners last week, looking at issues like advocacy, diversity and inclusion, the impact of the pandemic on education and the relationship between the board and superintendent.

The qualities and abilities of the superintendents were also considered.

A release from TASB cited Gonzalez’s small-town approach to leadership and his focus on relationships with district partners and staff.

“I am humbled by this great honor and blessed to be selected from a group of many outstanding educational leaders across the state,” Gonzalez wrote. “This would not have been possible without the support of our School Board and the hard work of dedicated teachers, administrators, staff and students. I come from a family of educators and, all my life, I’ve wanted to make a positive difference in the lives of children.”

The 2020 Superintendent of the Year will be announced at the Texas Association of School Administrators/TASB Convention, which starts in late September.