Edina Superintendent Stacie Stanley GS’13 Named CAPS/GS Alumna of the Year

Stacie Stanley GS’13 didn’t envision herself as a teacher until a life-changing experience inspired her to change her career path. She’s gone on to influence thousands of students and educators, most recently as superintendent of Edina Public Schools.

By Jason Schoonover ’09, content specialist

October 05, 2022 | 9:50 a.m.

Though she now leads a school district of more than 8,000 students, Stacie Stanley GS’13 didn’t originally set out to be an educator. In fact, she was pursuing a career in occupational therapy when she took a substitute teaching role that would change her life. Though it’s now decades later, she distinctly remembers how an African-American girl in her class was surprised to see someone who looked like herself in a teaching position. “She said, ‘You’re smart, and you’re brown?’” Stanley recalls. “And that was pivotal for me. I was going back to school and I was going to get my master’s degree in OT. I decided right then: I went home and I told my husband I was going to be a teacher.”

Stanley found a passion teaching mathematics, but it wasn’t long before she was tapped for leadership opportunities, which gave her a broader platform to serve more students—and fellow educators. She earned her Ed.D in K-12 Administration at Bethel and has gone on to work in many roles, including as principal and director of curriculum, before becoming superintendent of Edina Public Schools. With a staff of over 1,000 employees, Stanley is dedicated to developing and coaching leaders. But it’s all to benefit their students. “Our kids today are our leaders tomorrow,” she says. “And it sounds cliché, but it is the truth.”

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