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RUSD chief academic officer promoted to superintendent

In a unanimous vote of support, Riverside Unified School District’s Board of Education appointed Chief Academic Officer Renee Hill to succeed David Hansen, Ed.D., as superintendent beginning in July this year.

Hill brings a career of nearly 40 years in education to the position, in both the public and private sectors, 28 of which were spent in RUSD. As chief academic officer, she communicates between all RUSD principals and district departments, maintaining a unified approach to achieve the district’s measures and goals.

“The beautiful thing is this means I get to serve the city, this community, the student body,” Hill said. “I get to work with this group of coworkers, many of whom I’ve known for a long time … The main thing is that it means I get the opportunity to provide service in a different way.”

Board of Education President Tom Hunt said the decision to promote Hill brings an educator to the position who is well known by RUSD staff and faculty. “She knows the district, she’s respected by teachers and employees of the district, she was a principal and teacher herself … the transition will be simple in a way,” Hunt said. “We’re very excited about Renee.”

As the 16th-largest school district in the state, RUSD educates nearly 42,000 students in 50 schools. Soon to become its 12th superintendent, Hill will be the second female and the first person of color in the district’s history to serve in the role, Hunt said.

The decision was approved by the board on Thursday the 4th, two weeks after Hansen publicly announced his plan to retire at the end of this school year.

“I like how the board took action quickly and I’m really pleased with the decision,” Hansen said. “It just gives me great relief that they chose Renee because she understands the processes of the district’s mission.”

“A lot of the systems in place will continue with her at the helm,” He continued.

When she takes on the superintendency, Hill said she looks forward to developing collaboration among colleagues. “Our main focus is to support students and families from even higher levels of leadership … In order to achieve higher levels of student learning,” she said.