Dr. Jim Reese.
Dr. Jim Reese was named Hoover City Schools’ new interim superintendent at the called board meeting Dec. 19.
Reese served for nine years as the superintendent for Enterprise City Schools until his retirement three years ago and was recommended for the interim position by board member Earl Cooper. He was unanimously voted in to serve effective Jan. 1.
Current Superintendent Andy Craig announced his resignation in early November.
“It’s been a fairly exhausting process, but I can truthfully say we actually contacted, met with or touched base with every person who was available for the position,” Cooper said. “The results of these efforts came up with an education leader who, after he got done busing tables at his father’s restaurant at eight years old, has been a lifelong educator.”
Cooper said Reese has seen the highs and lows of educating, stating that he has masterfully handled crises in the past such as the tornado that hit Enterprise on March 1, 2007. Reese thanked the Board of Education for the opportunity, and said that it was a pleasure speaking with all of Hoover’s board members.
“If I had a choice of a school system, anywhere not just [in] Alabama, to serve as an interim superintendent, it would be Hoover,” Reese said. “Even when I was in Enterprise, the Hoover school system has an excellent reputation, and all of us at Enterprise knew about Hoover.”
After the tornado hit Enterprise in 2007, it left Reese with the task of rebuilding two schools and dealing with the deaths of eight students. He said the experience made him a better superintendent and a better person, but he also noted that Hoover isn't in need of rebuilding.
Reese said the school system is in great shape, and he has already met with several of Hoover’s administrative staff.
“A lot of times people will take for granted school boards,” Reese said. “Having attended board meetings for 25 or more years, I do not take for granted school boards, and everyone I have talked with has talked about the Hoover City School Board. It will be a pleasure for me to work for you and with you. I am just excited about accepting this opportunity and being a part of the Hoover City School system.”
He said he understands his role as interim superintendent and that he plans on being the bridge between Craig and the next permanent superintendent. The most rewarding aspect for him, Reese said, is to go into those schools and see the learning happening.
Reese is married with two children and five grandchildren.
“Ultimately our goal was to find someone the board felt would be the best available person to meet the current leadership needs of the district and someone who would sustain our momentum and reputation as a leading school district,” Cooper said in an statement released after the meeting. “Dr. Reese is a very much respected as a leader in education with demonstrated unquestionable values and a strong focus on schools and the community.”