For eight years Suzanne McWilliams has dedicated her time, energy, passion, dedication and devotion to the students and staff of the Forney Independent School District.
Last Wednesday, May 30, the District and the Forney ISD Board of Trustees recognized and honored Mrs. McWilliams with a retirement reception to let her know how much she has meant, and how much she has done for the District, the students and for the teachers of Forney ISD.
A number of dignitaries recognized Mrs. McWilliams for her work with Forney ISD during the reception. The City of Forney Mayor, Rick Wilson and Interim City Manager, Wendel Medford honored McWilliams with a gift and a key to the city.
A representative from State House District 4 Representative Lance Gooden's office presented McWilliams with a resolution from the State of Texas and District 2 House Representative Dan Flynn presented a certificate to McWilliams signed by Governor Greg Abbott. The Forney Education Foundation President Greg Pharris and Executive Director Kate Bell-Keierleber recognized McWilliams with a gift for her years of service on the foundation board.
Current Forney ISD Deputy Superintendent and soon to be Superintendent of Schools Dr. Justin Terry honored McWilliams with a gift card, a retirement plaque and a hand made quilt representing all of the schools in the District. The quilt was created by Mrs. Stormy Lemond, the District's Director of Future Ready Curriculum and signed by teachers, principals, administrators and staff members.
Keith Bell, the President of the Forney ISD Board of Trustees was the last presenter at the retirement reception. Mr. Bell honored Mrs. McWilliams for all of the accomplishments and successes of Forney ISD under her leadership and recognized her for her devotion, dedication and determination through a number of struggles, including her battle and victory over cancer during her tenure as superintendent.
Mrs. McWilliams first joined Forney ISD in 2010 as the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction. When the current superintendent at the time, Dr. Darrell Brown left the District for a superintendent position with another District, McWilliams was named the Interim Superintendent while the Board of Trustees conducted a search for a new superintendent.
The board named Michael Holland as the new superintendent in 2011 and McWilliams was named the Deputy Superintendent at the time. She remained the Deputy Superintendent for three years before being named the Superintendent of Schools when Holland accepted the Executive Director of the Region 6 Education Service Center located in Huntsville, Texas. McWilliams has served as the Superintendent of Schools for Forney ISD for four years.
McWilliams has more than 38 years of experience in the field of education beginning her career as a first, third, fifth grade and physical education teacher for students at Canton Elementary School in the Canton Independent School District in 1980. She moved into education administration in 1990 as the Assistant Principal of J.E. Rhodes Elementary School in the Van Independent School District before becoming the Principal at Van Intermediate School in 1992.
In 1998, McWilliams moved into central administration with Van ISD. During her 12 years in central administration she was the Executive Director of Human Resources, the Technology Director, and the District’s supervisor of principals and the special programs department. Prior to joining Forney ISD in 2010, McWilliams was the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction in Van ISD.
McWilliams received her bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Texas at Tyler and earned a Master’s in Education from Texas A&M Commerce. She holds teaching certifications in Elementary Art and Elementary Self Contained and has completed the Mid-Management Certification and the Superintendent Certification.
McWilliams is a State Board Member of the Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development and is a Certified Education Foundation Executive.
McWilliams official last day as Superintendent of Schools will be Friday, June 29.