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News Release
Finalists named for Edison Elementary School Principal position - 01/08/20

WALLA WALLA – Walla Walla Public Schools announces Jennifer Foster, Ann Gray and Jon Wetzler have been named finalists for the Edison Elementary School Principal position. The successful candidate is slated to replace Interim Principal Joel Chavez who was appointed for the short-term following Dr. Julie Perron’s promotion in the district. A required qualification, all three candidates are bilingual. Parents and staff are encouraged to meet candidates Thursday, Jan. 16 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. during public meet and greet sessions at the Edison Elementary School Library. Attendees are asked to complete candidate feedback cards and be present, if possible, for all three candidate sessions (translation services will be available).

Jennifer Foster currently serves as the associate principal at Mercer Island High School, where she participates on the building and district leadership teams, instructional coaching committee, and district instructional materials selection committee. She received her administrative degree from the Danforth Leadership Program at the University of Washington. Prior to entering administration, she worked for 12 years in the Snoqualmie Valley School District where she served as a secondary instructional coach for grades 6-12 as well as teacher and department chair for the Mount Si High School World Language Department. She has also worked as an adjunct instructor at Oregon State University, instructing and supervising student teachers and teaching college-level Spanish, led nearly a dozen student travel groups to Mexico, Costa Rica and Peru, and completed the Margins Social Justice Immersion Program in Los Angeles, CA. According to Foster, “One of my main motivators for becoming an elementary principal is to expand and nurture a love and enthusiasm for teaching and learning to an entire staff through a holistic, constructivist lens that supports and advocates for all students. Empowering and supporting teachers and elementary school students in the instructional core of learning in Dual Language education aligns with my core values and one that I would lead with dedication and passion.” 

Ann Gray currently serves as an assistant principal and state and federal programs director for the Shelton School District, overseeing programs such as dual language support, title grants, and early learning initiatives. Prior to her role in Shelton she was an elementary principal at Muckleshoot, worked for the State of Washington DHS Program, spent 16 years in Federal Way Public Schools, including serving as the Director of Project Implementation overseeing the district’s language acquisition plan, and 10 years in Seattle Public Schools where she supported building principal leadership development. Ann is a credentialed trainer and facilitator for programs such as “Courageous Conversations about Race” and “Coaching for Success,” and holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Special Education and Spanish from University of Texas as well as a Developmental Psychology Degree from the University of California at Santa Barbara. According to Gray, “As a former building principal and assistant principal, I have always served in school communities highly populated with cultural and language diversity. In each setting I have created a sense of urgency with staff in the area of cultural awareness, sensitivity and relationship building. I have come to learn in my own cultural journey that one must have a strong sense of self awareness and relationship to the world we live in, to truly understand and support students that walk into our schools each day.”

Jon Wetzler currently serves as a bilingual training instructor and curriculum developer for the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation at Ft. Benning, GA. His prior experience includes 21 years serving as a high school counselor and teacher including working as a counselor at Mountain View High School in Oregon as well as the Lead Counselor at Woodburn High School in Woodburn, OR. A citizen soldier, Mr. Wetzler served for over twenty years in the Army National Guard, recently retiring from service at the rank of Major. He holds a Masters of Social Work Degree from Portland State University and received his administrative license at the University of Oregon. According to Wetzler, “I believe I have the right balance of experience, skills and academic and professional preparation Walla Walla Public Schools might be looking for in candidates seeking to become the Principal and assume leadership and responsibility for students, faculty, staff and parents of the Edison Elementary School learning community and the Spanish language dual immersion program the school has become well known for.”

Meet and Greet Sessions (Thursday, Jan. 16 - Location: Edison Elementary School Library):

  • 4 p.m.               Candidate Ann Gray
  • 4:30 p.m.          Candidate Jennifer Foster
  • 5 p.m.               Candidate Jon Wetzler

The new principal will report July 1.


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