EDITOR’S NOTE: Mrs. Sanchez withdrew her name from consideration from the area superintendent position, which was filled by Rouse High School Principal Christine Simpson.

A leader dedicated to collaboration and continuous improvement is joining Leander ISD. The district is delighted to welcome Heather Sánchez as an area superintendent, providing guidance, support and coaching to campus principals.

The LISD Board of Trustees approved the hiring at its May 6 board meeting. Sánchez replaces Devin Padavil, Ed.D., who left to become Taylor ISD Superintendent in February. She will join the LISD team by midsummer.

“Leander ISD is fortunate to have the opportunity to invite Heather Sánchez to join our Area Superintendent team,” said Superintendent Bruce Gearing, Ed.D. “Her experience as a coach, mentor, principal supervisor and principal brings additional strength to our already impressive team. Heather’s passion and enthusiasm for children and learning is clearly evident. We are especially thrilled to tap into her talent as a bilingual educator and experience in dual language programs.”

Work Experience

Sánchez comes to LISD from the Seattle-area Bellevue School District, where she currently serves as Executive Director of Schools, a role similar to that of area superintendent. Sánchez previously served as Accelerated Programs, Choice & Innovation Director in the Lake Washington School District. She also led at the campus level as an elementary school principal in Washington State. 

“I am absolutely elated to have the opportunity to join Leander ISD and serve the entire community,” Sánchez said. “As an educator who is passionate about collaboration and ensuring the highest-quality learning experience for each and every student, I’m deeply honored to be joining such an innovative district that is fully dedicated to continuous improvement. I know I will be part of some amazing work in the service of students.”

A “Homecoming”

Growing up in New Mexico, where she began her public education career, Sánchez considers her journey to Leander as a return to her old stomping grounds.

“I grew up in New Mexico and spent almost all my summers with my grandparents in the Marble Falls area, so this feels like coming home,” she said. “My entire family is looking forward to our transition to the district and to being actively involved in the community.”

Sánchez earned a Bachelor of Science in Education degree from Western New Mexico University. She then earned a Master of Science in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.