In July, 2010, Dr. Virginia Moon was hired by the board as interim superintendent on a one-year contract. However, it did not take long for the board and the rest of the community to realize the district had gotten much more than they bargained for.
In her two years at the helm of the Broken Bow school district, Dr. Moon has overseen the resignation and replacement of several staff members, the addition of an elementary administrator, a successful school bond, school board elections and the tragic loss of two teachers and the injury of several students. And through it all she has maintained the poise, dignity and confidence of a true leader.
The impact and influence she has had on the community in only two short years was made evident when she was announced the 2012 Citizen of the Year by the Broken Bow Chamber of Commerce in March. Dr. Moon could have never anticipated how much she would grow to love this community in those two years - or how much the community would grow to love her.
Next Tuesday, school staff, students and members of the community will have the opportunity to bid a final farwell to Dr. Moon at a reception in her honor. The reception will be from 5-7 p.m. in the Board Room at the High School.
Presiding as superintendent over her last Broken Bow School Board meeting Monday evening, Dr. Moon thanked the staff, administration and board for everything they have done to make her time here so special.
â€śIâ€™ve told people all over that the district and community have given me at least as much as I have given. It has been 100 percent better than I ever hoped it could be.â€ť
She especially commended the board. â€śI would put you up against any board - any team - anywhere in the country,â€ť she said, declaring she would not let herself cry just yet.
Dr. Moon retired as superintendent of Ralston Public Schools in 2009, and served as a consultant for Ray & Associates of Omaha until she was hired by the Broken Bow school district in July 2010. At that time she was hired to serve one year as interim superintendent.
However, at the end of that year there were still many unresolved issues within the district, and the board had not had the opportunity to hire who they felt was the right person for the job. So Dr. Moon graciously offered to stay on another year.
â€śMy decision to stay allows the board another year to continue the search and assures them that they can be confident in their selection of a long-term superintendent. I believe this is the right decision at this point for me, the board and the community,â€ť she said of her decision in February 2011.
Exactly one year later, in February 2012, a two-year contract was offered by the district and accepted by Mark Sievering. He will officially take over the reigns as superintendent July 1.
As Dr. Moon finishes out her last days as head of the Broken Bow school district, staff members and those in the community reflect on the past two years.
â€śI appreciate that Dr. Moon has kept our district moving in a positive direction the two years she has been here,â€ť says Alberta Crawley, Administra-tive Assistant to the Superintendentâ€™s Office. â€śWe havenâ€™t become stagnant or complacent as a district.
â€śDr. Moon has been the driving force in establishing the Broken Bow Public Schools Foundation,â€ť Alberta continues. â€śThe Foundation is a way to impact our students education for generations to come.â€ť
In a previous interview, School Board President Michelle Zlomke offered her thoughts on the interim superintendent.
â€śDr. Moon has definitely been the right person, in the right place, at the right time for our school and community,â€ť said Zlomke. â€śShe brought skills and experiences that enabled her to promote unity and encourage productive discussions about long-term plans for our schools.
â€śYou always have the sense that Dr. Moon is listening to what you have to say, and I believe thatâ€™s part of the reason people in the community have appreciated her so much,â€ť Zlomke explains. â€śYou walk away from a conversation with her and you know that you have been heard.â€ť
Though Omaha is her permanent home, Dr. Virginia Moon can rest assured that she will always have a second home in Broken Bow.