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The next KDNK board of directors meeting is Monday, April 22nd at 5:30 PM. Click here for more details and an agenda.

RFSD superintendent candidates: Bill Wilson

Bill Wilson
Courtesy photo
Bill Wilson

The school district has scheduled a Community Open House to meet the candidates on March 7th at the Carbondale District office from 6:30pm to 8:30pm.

Last week, Roaring Fork School District announced their finalists for the superintendent position. In collaboration with the school district, KDNK has statements from each candidate with details on their background and priorities if given the job. The second candidate is Bill Wilson, who has spent the past 20 years as superintendent, nine of those at his current district in Brush, Colorado.

" I am a Colorado native, born in the northeastern part of the state, moved around quite a bit as a kid, and then finally settled later into a western Kansas area, and graduated from there, and shortly thereafter, married my high school sweetheart, and we took off for Washington State, which is where we began our lives together and all three of our boys were born there. And I began my career in education there, starting first as a coach while I was still in school and then teaching sixth grade for a few years and then middle school and then into administration and since then been a principal at all levels, taught a little bit of concurrent enrollment, English and speech and literature while being principal at a smaller school and eventually superintendent.

And I've been blessed with a variety of experiences and eager to see what the next chapter has and eager to see if it's a good fit for my wife and I to join the community there and the roaring fork district and, and see if we can continue down a path of making education better for everybody. Just from a personal level, my wife and I have spent some time in the area.

We love to hike and summited a couple of 14-ers. And so, we love the area. We love the outdoors, beautiful area, fairly familiar with the area.
There are so many things there that are, I think, a fit or a potential fit for what I do and how I go about it. I've had a lot of, a lot of opportunities to help school districts essentially come together. We've done some pretty good things together in Brush over the last nine years. And as I look at all of the pieces that appear to be there and the collective efficacy that I, I think is building in Roaring Fork, I'm excited to see if that's a good fit, and if I can help leverage what's been put in place to this point and, you know, again, review and see if there are some things that need to be maybe adjusted or, or step back and redirect, but mostly to grab a hold of what's there and move forward. And I think, like I said, there are so many good things that appear to be in place or almost in place that I, I'd love the opportunity to join in and see if we can take it to the next level.

I'm excited to see that there have been some forums held about safety and getting input from our communities. Community engagement's always a challenge, and I think that's another one of those things that I've had some success with. And every situation's a little different. I certainly don't have the answer or all of the answers.
I think everybody knows that we have to be doing a better job of listening to one another, whether it's our parents. Or our staff or our stakeholders and helping to communicate effectively. First of all, what's going on? Secondly, what some of our challenges are. And thirdly, you know, helping to come together to develop those plans to address whatever those hurdles are.
Knowing that we don't control all of the variables. And so as we take a look at, again, Roaring Fork is, different than any place else in the world, I would imagine, and we just have to take a look at each child, not just every child, but each child, and know that they come from a different perspective, a different background.
They have different challenges. And so as we try and come together and engage our community, we have to help everybody to understand that, and then to navigate that. And then same thing with the student achievement. Same but different. We have a monumental job and we have some students who are raring and ready to go and well supported and other students that are not.
How does a school district address the needs of each child when we have to consider every child? Well, there are some elements to that of breaking that down into the smaller pieces and in trying to make sure that we have consistent attention to those specific strategies. And then follow that up by analysis of our data, and then do we redirect, do we continue what we're doing, do we do a little of both, do we need some additional assistance?
Again, you go back to communication, same thing. Let's say some of our strategies have worked to engage our community. Well, they worked this time, so let's not forget that, but let's also understand that there may be some changes that come about, or a different set of Of our stakeholders that we did not engage with, how are we going to do that?

And let's get out there and meet and talk about that. And that's where I feel like I've been gifted. I'm a relational guy and I know that we have to build those trusting foundational pieces of the relationship so that people have that assumption of positive intent in the event that things don't go quite like we want or we hit the tough times, because we know the tough times keep coming that way we lean in, as opposed to pulling away.
I look forward to having the opportunity to meet with people. I'm a what you see is what you get kind of guy, and my wife and I are are thrilled at the opportunity that's. In front of us and we're eager to explore and explore with others to see if, if this seems like a good fit for us and the best option for the Roaring Fork School District."

Finalist Bill Wilson is from Brush, Colorado, and finalist Anna Cole is from Carbondale.

Anna Cole's interview is available here.

Hattison Rensberry has a Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design and Drawing, but has worked for newsrooms in various capacities since 2019.
She also provides Editorial Design for the Sopris Sun.