Nevada Joint Union High School District announces new superintendent |

Nevada Joint Union High School District announces new superintendent

Brett McFadden

The Nevada Joint Union High School District announced Wednesday that Brett McFadden has been selected as its new superintendent.

McFadden will fill the seat being vacated by Dr. Louise Johnson, who is retiring after a lengthy career in education.

McFadden will leave his current post as Associate Superintendent of the Business Services division of the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District on June 30. His contract with the Nevada Union district becomes effective July 1.

Johnson will remain on board for a number of weeks while McFadden gets acclimated to his new job.

“She is a good, solid educator,” McFadden said of his predecessor. “People seek her advice and mentorship.”

Also a former consultant with Association of California School Administrators, McFadden was approached by search firm McPherson & Jacobson who asked if he would be interested in the superintendency.

“I took a few days, drove up there, and we thought this is a place we could come back to and plant roots,” said McFadden. “I was impressed by how much of a community there is, and how important education is to the community.”

McFadden said he was affected also by the district’s ability to be prudent while still taking risks.

“They have lots of things in place that other districts don’t have.”

The newly appointed superintendent said he places high value on career and college readiness, and he will do everything he can to make sure the district has services, programs and extracurriculars that will help students create a meaningful connection to their school.

“Kids don’t come in one-size-fits-all,” he said. “We have to make sure they have rewarding, fulfilling lives. It’s a noble cause, and I love it.”

His wife Marci, a director of communications also with Monterey Peninsula, will join him in his move. The couple have two sons, ages 16 and 20.

McFadden is looking forward to moving to Nevada County.

“We’re so excited,” he said. “My family really loves the outdoors. We love going to the theater, wine tasting, camping.”

Two meeting attendees opposed the hiring of McFadden, citing an item on the evening’s agenda meant to waive credential requirements initially outlined in the job’s description. They felt it created an uneven playing field and kept potential candidates from applying for the seat.

The board acknowledged the individuals, but remained firm in its resolution.

“Not one candidate had every single qualification,” board trustee Linda Campbell said. “The process was hard, long, and well worth it.”

Trustee Al Angulo said, “This wasn’t something we did on a whim. This wasn’t a knee-jerk reaction. We did what the stakeholders advised us to do. Our greatest concern is the well-being of NU students.”

Jennifer Nobles is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at or 530-477-4231.

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