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Board of Directors Elects New President
SCASD Board of Directors Elects New President
On Jan. 11, 2023, the Board of Directors unanimously elected Jackie Huff to be the new board president following the resignation of former president Amber Concepcion from the Board.
Huff, who joined the Board in 2021, was the sole nomination. She is an assistant teaching professor in Penn State’s College of Engineering, as well as a former public high school math teacher.
"I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as president, and I want to thank the Board for its commitment to serving SCASD," Huff said after the meeting. "Public education deserves the best of us, and this is what I plan to deliver so long as I serve on the Board. I know the other members join me in this sentiment, and I am eager to continue working with them to support this incredibly important pillar of our community."
Concepcion formally resigned, effective Jan. 17, during the meeting after 11 years on the Board, the last nine as president. Recently, she was appointed to be a Centre County commissioner in place of Michael Pipe, who stepped down to become the deputy chief of public safety in Gov. Josh Shapiro’s administration.
“Leaving this role is a hard decision because of how important this work is, as well as how rewarding it is to work with such a committed team of colleagues in our district. Serving as a School Board member has been a great joy,” Concepcion wrote in her resignation letter.
“Getting to know so many of our dedicated teachers and staff members and seeing first hand the enormous impact of their work has given me insight into the vital role of public schools that I would not have had otherwise. Serving in this role has been an incredible learning opportunity, and I am sure I will always continue advocating for kids and public schools!”
In addition, Concepcion gave a farewell speech during the meeting.
On behalf of the district, Interim Superintendent Curtis Johnson congratulated Concepcion for her appointment and commended her for her contributions to the SCASD community.
“We are proud to see you take on this new leadership role. Based on your distinguished service for the past 11 years — including nine as president — we know you will excel as a commissioner,” he said. “During your tenure, we were able to accomplish a great deal — including, the State High Project, three elementary school building projects, a new school day, the Memorial Field renovation, an elementary STEM program, and curriculum updates, as well as an equity policy and resolution. That’s quite a packed decade.
“Throughout all of this, your leadership helped carry us through exciting as well as challenging times in education, and we appreciate all that you’ve done to further the district’s growth. Above all, we’re most grateful for your unwavering dedication to our students and your deep commitment to public education. We know that your passion for civic involvement will carry over to your important work ahead, and we wish you the best.“
Board Vice President Gretchen Brandt and board member Amy Bader also expressed their appreciation for Concepcion’s leadership and service. Brandt relayed congratulations and well-wishes from former board members Jim Leous, Penni Fishbaine and Lori Bedell as well.
By Chris Rosenblum
Photos by Nabil K. Mark