School Leadership

Great schools require great leaders. Education leaders are identified, developed, and supported through the Leadership Pipeline, a collaboration with Hamilton County Department of Education.

Being a principal isn’t easy. It’s comparable to being the CEO of a good sized business, and a good principal is important for the success of a school, its teachers and its students. The Principal Leadership Academy is an intensive, year-long program to train, mentor and prepare our future principal leaders. The topics covered range from management and finance to human resources and external development. Additionally, every aspiring principal is paired with a mentor from the business community.

We are proud to welcome the seventh class of aspiring principals to the Principal Leadership Academy!

  • Talley Caldwell – Woodmore Elementary
  • Karyn Cox – Hunter Middle
  • Steve Lewis – Central High
  • Dawn Lim – Tyner Academy
  • Kristy Newson – Spring Creek Elementary
  • Jeff Paulson – Thrasher Elementary
  • Jenni Starr – Normal Park Museum Magnet
  • Matthew Thurman – Normal Park Upper


Congratulations to sixth cohort of Principal Leadership Academy graduates


  • Nikki Bailey – East Lake Elementary
  • Brenda Cothran – Ooltewah Elementary
  • Jacqueline Cothran – Brainerd High
  • Mary Catherine Gatlin – Signal Mountain M/H
  • Arielle Hayes – Orchard Knob Middle
  • Steve Henry – Soddy Daisy High
  • Travis Miller – Tyner Middle
  • Lindsay Starnes – Donaldson Elementary
  • Matthew Taylor – Howard High
  • Jeana Turner – East Ridge Elementary

The Principal Leadership Academy is a partnership between PEF, Hamilton County Department of Education, the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce, and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

For more information on Principal Leadership Academy contact:

Bill Kennedy Director

423.668.2429 •