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August 11, 2021 View as Webpage

Dr. John Richard to be New SEP President
The Stark Education Partnership today announced the selection of Dr. John Richard, Deputy State Superintendent for the Ohio Department of Education, as the new President.

"Dr. John Richard is the ideal person to carry on the great work Dr. Teresa Purses provided as the President of the organization. John’s leadership positions in education at the local and state level coupled with his deep roots and passion for Stark County will serve our community well in his new role as President of the Stark Educational Partnership," said Ray Hexamer, Chair of the Partnership board and President of the Stark Economic Development Board. "The Stark Education Partnership has been a catalyst in engaging and collaborating with education, business, philanthropy and community stakeholders to drive improvement and innovation for students that will insure education and career success."

Dr. Richard is currently Ohio’s Deputy State Superintendent. Laura Kohler, State Board of Education President, stated, "Dr. Richard has played a vital role in guiding the Ohio Department of Education to a number of important accomplishments. He has acted as a key connector bringing individuals and groups from all corners of the education community together in pursuit of the common goals in Each Child, Our Future, Ohio’s strategic plan for education."

Richard has served in numerous leadership capacities at ODE including roles in leading the review and revision of the state’s Operating Standards for Schools and the department’s liaison with the academic distress commission. Prior to joining the department, he spent 30 years in the education field in roles ranging from teacher to district superintendent.

Richard is a Stark native graduating from Sandy Valley High School and Mount Union College. He started his teaching career at Sandy Valley High School (1983-1985) and served as the Superintendent of the Perry Local School District (2005-2013). Richard earned a Master’s Degree at Cleveland State University and his doctorate at the University of Akron.
"It is with tremendous anticipation that I have the opportunity to serve as the next president of the Stark Education Partnership," Dr. Richard said. "The Board of Directors and President Teresa Purses have formed business and community partnerships, and implemented initiatives that set a firm foundation for improving the future of greater Stark County. I am passionate about building on that foundation to improve the lives of students and, in turn, the economic strength of the community. It is an honor to serve the community!"

"I have had the privilege of working with John in our numerous roles in education over the past fifteen years and he is the outstanding choice for the President’s position," Purses, retiring President of the Partnership, said. "John is a well-respected leader in Stark County and throughout the state and I am gratified that he has agreed to come ‘home’ to lead the work of the Partnership."

Dr. Richard will join the Partnership on October 11th.
The Stark Education Partnership (a 501(c)3 non-profit organization) collaborates with education, business, civic and community members across the entire spectrum – cradle to career – to create and respond to opportunities that will provide ALL students with education and career success.