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Chris Rust Chosen as Toledo's Next Superintendent

posted May 14, 2015, 10:23 AM by Megan Kinsman

Chris Rust will replace Sharon Bower as Toledo School District’s superintendent.

The School Board selected the Warden High School principal from a group of five finalists, following a week of interviews and a two-hour executive session Friday night. The Board will finalize its decision at its April 16 meeting.

School Board Chairwoman Heidi Buswell said Rust was chosen for his preparedness as well as his connection with school staff and the community.

“When you’ve got people who are all well qualified, you start looking at other things. He connected with the people in town,” Buswell said Sunday. “He just had some charisma that helped people feel comfortable around him.”

Rust has been principal for five years at Warden High, which has nearly 300 students in the Tri-Cities area of Southeastern Washington. He previously served as principal at Serendipity Therapeutic School and in the Wahluke School District in Central Washington.

He started his administrative career in the Battle Ground School District, where he served as an assistant principal for 15 years.

Though Rust has no superintendent experience, Buswell said his willingness to learn and ask questions will help him adapt quickly. Bower, who is stepping down after 10 years with the district, will be available to Rust as a resource, Buswell said.

Rust also wants extend his administrative duties outside the school district, Buswell said.

“He understands that being superintendent doesn’t end at the district. It means being a leader in the community as well,” she said.