Dr. Mary Pfeiffer is entering her thirteenth year as the Neenah Joint School District (NJSD) Superintendent. Originally from Green Bay, WI, she graduated high school from Bay Port High School located in the Howard-Suamico School District. She received her Bachelor of Science Degree from UW-Whitewater with a double major in Sociology and Criminal Justice. In addition to receiving her degree, she also played four years of softball for the Warhawks.
Upon graduating from UW-Whitewater, she worked for six years in the juvenile corrections system. During that time, she was employed by Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) where she taught courses in the police and correctional science area. Also during that time, she received her Education Degree from UW-Green Bay.
In 1994, she transitioned into teaching at Ethan Allen School for Boys, a juvenile prison for boys located in Wales, WI. During that time, she also met her husband (a teacher, not an inmate) and married in 1998. In 1996, she opened the CESA #7 Alternative High School that served at-risk students from three school districts. Two years later, in 1998, she accepted the Dean of Students position at Neenah High School. That same year she completed her Master’s in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at UW-Madison. After five years as a high school administrator, she became principal at Stevens Point Area Senior High School (SPASH) located in Stevens Point, WI. Two years later, she became the Executive Director of Instruction for the Green Bay School District, where she was responsible for the oversight of 19 schools serving approximately 10,000 students. During this tenure, she received her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from UW-Madison.
In 2009, she returned to the Neenah Joint School District and accepted the position of Superintendent. For the past 12 years, Dr. Pfeiffer has been committed to serving the students, staff, and community of Neenah.
Past AASA Wisconsin Superintendent of the Year Winners:
2021 Wisconsin Superintendent of the Year: Mark Gruen
2020 Wisconsin Superintendent of the Year: Aaron Sadoff
2019 Wisconsin Superintendent of the Year: Robert Mayfield
About the Superintendent of the Year:
As a sponsor of the superintendent of the Year program, First Student wants to recognize these leaders in a special way this year, because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the disruption that has affected all education systems but also the innovative approaches that the superintendents and school districts addressed through radio, television, zoom and take-home packages. These superintendents are the very best in public education and are needed more than ever during this crisis.
About the Award:
The superintendent of the Year program, sponsored by First Student and AASA, The School superintendents Association, pays tribute to the talent and vision of the men and women who lead the nation’s public schools.
State level winners are selected on the following criteria:
- Leadership for Learning
- Community Involvement