CHADRON – New superintendents officially start work today at the Chadron and Crawford school districts, where Caroline Winchester and Kirk Hughes have both retired.
New Chadron Superintendent Dr Ginger Meyer is a 26-year education veteran, all in Nebraska, and superintendent of the Scribner-Snyder Public Schools since 2011.
President-elect of the Nebraska Rural Community Schools Association, Meyer says she immediately felt an affinity for the Chadron district during the application process because while it has nearly 3 times the students of Scribner-Snyder, both have district-wide accreditation through AdvancEd and strate
gic plans for continuous improvement.
Her early days at Scribner were also similar to Winchester’s in Chadron as both inherited a backlog of needed facility repairs and upgrades but with few reserves. Both saw bond issues to meet those needs soundly defeated, and both were able to address many of the facility issues over the next few years one at a time within the regular budget.
Crawford, on the other hand, is getting a first-time superintendent in northern Panhandle native Gene “Mo” Hanks, who’s spent the last
13 years as principal at Kimball Junior-Senior High. Hanks says it just seemed the right time to make the change because his youngest child just graduated from Kimball while Crawford is just 40 miles from his mother, who still lives in Hemingford.
Nebraska Principal of the Year in 2015, Hanks is a second-generation superintendent; his late father Don headed the Hemingford school district for 26 years while his late uncle Ron Hiles was the longtime superintendent in Hay Springs.
The Hemingford High graduate also has strong ties to Chadron State. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the school with his wife, daughter, and parents all educators with CSC degrees. His daughter is preparing to start her first job after graduating from CSC in May.