long-time ESD 112 executive leaders are set to retire the end of June.
Dennis Mathews is the Associate Superintendent for Specialized Student
Services, Birth-21, who has been with the ESD since 1980. Jada Rupley
is the Associate Superintendent for Teaching and Learning. She has served
ESD 112 for the past 33 years.
Both Rupley and Mathews have made noteworthy contributions to the ESD
through the years. Rupley began her career as school psychologist for
the Castle Rock School District. Since that time, she’s served in
a number of leadership positions in special education, early childhood
and youth and family programs that span birth through adulthood. Among
her numerous accomplishments, awards and accolades at the state and national
levels, Jada led the development of the Southwest Washington Child Care
Consortium (SWCCC), the Northwest Service Academy and a variety of school
programs for at-risk youth. Thanks to her passion, experience and leadership
in early childhood education, Governor Gregoire appointed her to the statewide
Early Learning Council. She also serves on “WA KIDS,” a statewide
committee developing the new kindergarten assessments program, funded
by the state’s first Race to the Top grant. Most recently, Jada
seamlessly led the merger of two major ESD departments — Children,
Youth and Family Services and Instructional Services and Technology, now
known as the Department of Teaching and Learning. Last year, Jada was
appointed as a trustee for Clark College.
Dennis Mathews came to the ESD in 1980 as a special education supervisor
and became an assistant superintendent in 1993. Dennis provided leadership
in the region’s Consolidated Services Agreement (CSA) as the liaison
to OSPI; provided oversight of the Special Education Cooperative, which
has grown to 29 school districts since its inception in 1983; and was
appointed by Governor Gregoire to the State Interagency Coordinating Council.
He also had several leadership roles at the state and national levels,
including Washington Association of School Administrators, Safety Net
Committee and the Urban Special Education Leadership Collaborative, a
network of special education leaders.
Ms. Mary Mertz will succeed Dennis Mathews. Mary currently serves as the
Executive Director of Student Services for the Reynolds School District,
located in the Portland Metro area. Prior to joining Reynolds she was
the Director of Special Education for Portland Public Schools and the
Director of Education Strategy for Insight Schools Inc., a network of
online secondary schools in eight states. Dr. Yuki Monteith will fill
the position currently held by Jada Rupley. Yuki is the current Director
of School Improvement for the Parkrose School District in the Portland
Metro area. Prior to joining Parkrose, she was a middle school principal
in the Reynolds School District and had a fixed term faculty appointment
with Portland State University.
~Jodi Thomas, ESD 112
Public Information Coordinator