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Ballard named Principal of the Year for the State of Oklahoma

Posted Date: 04/26/2024

Ballard named Principal of the Year for the State of Oklahoma

Source: Poteau Daily News

Joe Ballard, Principal at Poteau High School, has been named the Oklahoma High school Principal of the Year by the Oklahoma Association of Secondary School Principals. This is a statewide honor, and it means that Ballard will be eligible to represent Poteau as well as the whole state in the running for the national honor of Principal of the Year.

The announcement was made by School Superintendent Scott Kempenich at the Bob Lee Kidd Center on Wednesday, where the whole school was assembled at the last minute. It was was a surprise for everyone, including Ballard.

After Kempenich announced that Ballard had been awarded this honor, Ballard spoke.

“This is a huge, huge surprise,” Ballard said. “I want to thank teachers, students. It’s been a rough few years for all of us, four superintendents in a 14 month span. It took all of us to do this.”

He said he has the best students and the best staff “in the world.”

“It means a lot to me, and I promise you I will represent Poteau well,” Ballard said.

This year marks Ballard’s ninth year working as a principal at Poteau Public Schools. He said during that time, his close relationships with PHS teachers and staff is the reason he won this award.

“I’m just a face,” he said. “They’re the ones that are on the ground doing the work. They’re the reason why I won this.”

Before having this role, Ballard was Principal at Pansy Kidd Middle School. He said his experiences there allowed him to grow and learn, which helped prepare him for his role as principal at PHS. He credited the staff at PKMS for his experiences there.

Of being chosen as Principal of the Year by OASA, Ballard said, “It’s an honor.”