CASPER, Wyo. — The Natrona County School District Board of Trustees expressed gratitude toward retiring Superintendent Steve Hopkins at the end of their Monday, June 8 meeting for his 25 years of service to the district.
Board Chair Rita Walsh and Trustee Dave Applegate both noted that Hopkins helped guide the district through difficult financial times in recent years. All the trustees expressed gratitude for his efforts.
“Superintendent Hopkins, I realize I told you several times over the last several years that you were the right man at the right time,” Applegate said. “But I realized maybe that wasn’t the right compliment….I think you actually would have been the right guy at anytime. I think you have been a tremendous leader and we were very fortunate to have had you and I wish you best of luck in your next step.”
Article continues below...
Before expressing her appreciation, Trustee Debbie McCullar noted Hopkins’ calm demeanor, joking that she had often tried and failed to say something to work him up.
“You are so unflappable, that’s just hard for me to take,” she said. “Thank you for everything, you’re just awesome.”
The trustees also welcomed Superintendent-elect Mike Jennings during the meeting.
“We’re going to miss you Superintendent Hopkins….and welcome aboard Mr. Jennings,” Trustee Kianna Smith said.
In addition to their goodbyes to Hopkins, the trustees also thanked NCSD staff as Monday was the last official day of the 2019-2020 school year.
“I also want to thank all of our staff that worked so hard and diligently,” Trustee Angela Coleman said.
Trustee Kevin Christopherson noted that graduation ceremonies were different due to COVID-19, but that he thought they went surprisingly well.
“The high schools really pulled it off, the kids really enjoyed it,” he said.
Jennings said that he was humbled and honored to follow in Hopkins footsteps.
Hopkins’ introduction page on NCSD’s website still features his welcome message to parents, guardians and students, which reads as follows:
Welcome to the Natrona County School District!
It has been over 120 years since public education began in Natrona County, starting with a small schoolhouse serving just 50 students in Casper. Over the past one-hundred years, we’ve watched our district blossom into more than 30 schools and programs – pre-kindergarten through high school.
We are experiencing exciting times in our school system. We are doing our best and working diligently to create learning systems where all of our students can succeed in school, become prepared for graduation and ultimately become valuable, contributing members of our global society. It is our mission to empower every learner to grow, excel and be successful contributors to the local/global community.
I encourage you to keep up to date on news from our district by checking the main page of this website, and I encourage you to let us know what you think by e-mailing or calling my office at any time, sharing your feedback by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your interest in this district.
Yours in Education,