Concluding a comprehensive search process, Richardson ISD trustees voted the evening of July 18 to name RISD Interim Superintendent Tabitha Branum as the lone finalist to become RISD’s next superintendent.
In Texas, a 21-day waiting period is required from the date that a lone finalist is selected and when the candidate can be formally named superintendent. Trustees plan to meet on August 9 to complete the process.
“At the start of this superintendent search, the board was steadfastly committed to following a robust and rigorous search process that was centered around community input,” said Board President Regina Harris. “We learned from our community that a leader with a strong academic conviction, who could provide steady and focused leadership, was what Richardson ISD needed – and we listened. From this community feedback, our search yielded an extensive pool of applicants from across the country with diverse backgrounds and experiences. In the end, Ms. Tabitha Branum demonstrated that her unique leadership capabilities and track record of success in RISD were exactly what the community was looking for. Ms. Branum can relate to RISD, has shown leadership in building community consensus, is transformative, and has a strong academic conviction. This is why I am proud that Ms. Branum has received unanimous support from the Board of Trustees – it’s clear that our track record of success continues with this new chapter.”
“I am honored and humbled to continue my service to RISD as superintendent,” said Branum. “I’m grateful for the trust that our Board has placed in me, and I accept this responsibility with great excitement for the future of Richardson ISD, our students, our staff, and our community. As an RISD parent, resident, and taxpayer, I’m fully invested in the success of our schools and am committed to providing the very best educational opportunities for all students.”
Branum will become RISD’s 10th superintendent since J.J. Pearce was named in 1946. She was named interim superintendent in December 2021, and has served RISD families for eight years, as assistant superintendent of secondary schools and most recently as deputy superintendent. Overall, Branum has been a Texas educator for 25 years, including service as a classroom teacher, assistant principal, principal, technology leader, and curriculum leader prior to joining RISD. Click here to see Branum’s bio.
In the spring, RISD trustees retained the firm of O’Hanlon, Demerath and Castillo to conduct a national search for RISD’s next superintendent, and the process included input and feedback from parents, employees, students, and community members. From that feedback, a profile was developed that led to the identification of applicants, and the search formally began in June. Trustees interviewed multiple applicants as part of the process.