President: Dr. Travis Burns, Principal, Northumberland High School, Northumberland Division and a past president of VASSP (2019-2020). Travis has been principal at NHS for nine years. He served 14 years in the Gloucester Division as a social studies teacher, assistant principal, and middle school principal. He represents VASSP on the VDOE’s Advisory Board on Teacher Education and Licensure. Additionally, he has served on numerous Blue Ribbon Panels for the Virginia Department of Education and most recently served on the Virginia Department of Education’s Covid-19 Education Work Group. Travis has been a VASSP member since 2011. B.S. University of Mary Washington, M.Ed. and Ed.D. College of William & Mary.
President-elect: Dr. Michael D. Kelly, Principal, Cox High School, Virginia Beach Division Mike began his career in 1991 as a middle school teacher in Virginia Beach. After eight years in the classroom, Mike matriculated into an assistant principal position in the division. Three years later, he moved into a middle school principal position. In 2008, Mike transitioned into higher education, where he taught graduate level Educational Leadership classes for Virginia Tech. He specialized in school law and school finance. In 2017 Mike returned to preK-12 education in Virginia Beach, taking the reins of Cox HS, where both of his daughters had recently graduated. Mike has been a VASSP member since 1998. M.S., Ed.D. The George Washington University.
Immediate Past President: Mr. Donald D. Vale, Principal, Thomas Harrison Middle School, Harrisonburg Division. Don has served as president of VASSP twice, 2003-2004 and 2021-2022. He has 44 years of experience in public education with nearly three decades of experience in administration at the middle and high school, and central office. Don is a former NASSP State Coordinator for Virginia. He has served as chair of the Albemarle County Principals Association as well as a variety of local and state level committees. A member of VASSP since 1986, Don attests to the invaluable personal experience and growth that has occurred as a result of his involvement. B.A. University of Virginia, M.Ed. University of Virginia.
State Coordinator: Dr. Douglas Fulton, Director of School Administration, Loudoun Division. He was previously the principal of Freedom High School and served as an assistant principal at Potomac Falls High School. He has been a public school educator for 35 years in the Fairfax and Loudoun divisions. Doug has taught at the middle and high school levels, served as a coach, and sponsor activities coordinator. He has been a VASSP member since 2010. B.A. Graceland University, M.A. & M.Ed. George Mason University, Ed.D. College of William & Mary.
Executive Director/CEO: Dr. Randy D. Barrack, VASSP, Richmond. Randy has been the executive director of VASSP since 1979. The former high school principal is an experienced mediator who is regularly involved in litigation affecting school principals and assistant principals. He has been an advocate for public school education at the Virginia General Assembly since 1979. He is a co-author of The Legal Handbook for Virginia School Administrators, 3rd edition, Omni Publishers. Randy has also written or edited numerous monographs and professional handbooks including The Virginia Principal – A Professional Practice Handbook. He is a member of the Cognia Global Commission and a longtime adjunct professor for Virginia Commonwealth University. In 2016 he received the Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of Secondary School Principals. B.S. James Madison University, M.Ed. Virginia Commonwealth University, Ed.D. University of Virginia, Ph.D. Virginia Commonwealth University.
DOE Representative: Dr. Lisa Coons is Virginia’s 27th superintendent of public instruction. She taught high school English in both rural and urban districts in central Ohio. From 2009 to 2012, Coons was assistant superintendent of Ross Local Schools, Ohio. She was director of academics of LEAD Public Schools, TN, from 2012 to 2013. Coons was a middle school supervisor at Sumner County Schools, TN, from 2013 to 2014. From 2014 to 2016, she was executive director of instructional leadership at the Tennessee Department of Education. Coons was executive officer of district priority schools at Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools from 2017 to 2019. Coon became the chief academic officer of the Tennessee Department of Education in June 2019. B.S. & M.A. Wright Sate University, Ed.S. & Ed.D. David Lipscomb University.
Ms. Kimberly Greer, Principal, Langley High School, Fairfax County Division. Kimberly has been an educator in Fairfax County for over 26 years. She taught middle school English and Social Studies for twelve years. Prior to her principalship, Kimberly worked as an assistant principal in three high schools. Kimberly has served on various leadership committees for school districts and The National Association of Secondary School Principals. She has been a VASSP member since 2006. B.S. University of North Carolina at Greensboro, M.Ed. Virginia Tech, and Educational Leadership Endorsement George Mason University.
Mr. Shawn DeRose, Principal, Annandale High School, Fairfax County Division Shawn has been a principal at both the middle and high school levels. At Glasgow Middle School, Virginia’s largest middle school, Shawn’s leadership transformed the work of the school through a focus on Collaborative Teams. Glasgow went from being accredited with warning, to being fully accredited and was later named a Model PLC School by Solution Tree. In January 2020, Shawn was named principal of Annandale High School just in time to steer the school through the global pandemic. In addition, Shawn served as an assistant principal at Justice High School and Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. He was named the 2014 Outstanding Secondary School Assistant Principal of Virginia. Shawn has been a VASSP member since 2005. B.A. Ohio University, M.A. The Ohio State University.
Mr. Timothy Beatty, Principal, Heritage High School, Lynchburg Division Tim spent four years in the Lynchburg Division and two years in Roanoke City Division as a World History Teacher. He returned to the Lynchburg Division in July 2003 as an Assistant Principal at Heritage High School. Tim served as an assistant principal for four years and an associate principal for five years before being named principal at Heritage High School in 2012. He is currently a board member of the Educational Foundation at CVCC, Wilson Center For Leadership at Hampden-Sydney College and Partners In Education in Lynchburg City Schools. He has been a VASSP member since 2016. B.S. Hampden-Sydney College, M.S in Educational Leadership Radford University.
Dr. Herman Mizell, Principal, Elko Middle School, Henrico Division. Herman has served as an administrator at the elementary, middle, and high school levels with the Chesapeake Division, Richmond City Division, Loudoun Division, and Henrico Division. Prior to becoming an administrator, Herman taught English and public speaking in the Suffolk Division, Montgomery County Public Schools, MD, and in the Chesapeake Division. His mantra is “effort creates ability.” He has been a VASSP member since 2012. B.A. Norfolk State University, M.Ed. Virginia State University, Ed.D., Nova Southeastern University.
Mr. Michael Pflugrath, Principal, Osbourn High School, Manassas City Public Schools Division. Mike began his career in the Fairfax County Division at Woodson High School where he taught social studies and leadership for nine years. He continued his teaching career at South County High School as a collaborative team leader. After 12 years in the classroom, Mike served as the Director of Student Activities for five years and was promoted to an Assistant Principal at South County High School for six years. He was named Principal of Osbourn High School in 2019. Mike’s leadership transformed the work of the school through a focus on student engagement. He was named the 2018 Outstanding Secondary School Assistant Principal of Virginia and was a National Finalist. Mike has been a VASSP member since 2013. B.A. James Madison University, M.A. George Mason University.
Dr. Melanie M. Patterson, Principal, Lake Taylor School, Norfolk Division. Melanie is a 26-year educator focused on setting an atmosphere for successful teaching and learning. She led the transition of Lake Taylor Middle School to now a K-8 school, merging three schools together over a three year period. Previously, a middle school assistant principal with Suffolk Public Schools, her concentration is on establishing relationships, routines, and rigor in the classroom. She taught English on the high school level with Norfolk Public Schools and Suffolk Public Schools. Melanie joined VASSP in 2012. B.A. Norfolk State University, M.Ed. Old Dominion University, Ed.D. Virginia Tech.
Mrs. Katie B. Werner, Principal, T. Benton Gayle Middle School, Stafford Division. Katie began her career in 2002 as a high school English teacher in the Stafford County. After 11 years in the classroom, she joined the Stafford school leadership team as an assistant principal at the middle and high school levels. Five years later, in 2018 she became principal at T. Benton Gayle Middle School. Katie specialized in School and Community Relations at St. John Fisher College in Rochester, NY. She lives in Stafford with her husband Doug, a high school science teacher in Stafford and their daughter, Olivia who is a student in Stafford County Public Schools. Katie has been a VASSP member since 2016. B.A. English St. John Fisher College, M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Mr. James F. Garst, Principal, Salem City Schools, Salem Division. After initially graduating from Virginia Tech, Jamie served as a Graduate Research Assistant there from 2003 to 2007. After obtaining his first Master’s degree there, returned to his alma mater, Salem High School, to teach chemistry and biology 2008-2013. He went on to serve as Assistant Principal there beginning in 2013. In 2017 he was appointed principal of Andrew Lewis Middle School. Jaime was recognized for his leadership abilities by VASSP and is the 2022 Outstanding Middle School Principal of Virginia. B.S., M.S. Biochemistry, M.A., Science Education, Virginia Tech, M.S. Educational Leadership, Radford University.
Dr. John Ringstaff, Principal, Amelia County High School, Amelia Division. John began his career in 2001 as a high school chemistry and biology teacher in the Powhatan Divison. After 11 years in the classroom, John became a science curriculum coordinator there. After one year, John matriculated to assistant principal at Powhatan High School and served for six years in the position. John is currently in his fourth year as principal of Amelia County High School. John, a member of VASSP since 2019, is married to Ashley, a school occupational therapist, and has two daughters, Mackenzie and Madeline. B.S. Radford University, M.T. Virginia Commonwealth University, Ed.D. Virginia Commonwealth University.