Here are Administrator candidate Interest Statements for serving on the MREA 2021 Board of Directors, representing the South Central Zone. Find your zone.

Administrator Candidates

Kyle Edgerton, Superintendent, Campbell-Tintah

As an administrator of one of the smallest school districts in MN, I respectfully submit my application to serve on the Board. I have 20+ years of experience with rural schools advocating for advancing services, programs and policies in Minnesota and North Dakota. For rural schools to remain relevant and vital they must be engaged politically so they are “at the table,” heard, and understood. If elected to the board I promise to bring a deep commitment to contributing to MREA’s work to build a vibrant and effective voice for all of Greater Minnesota.

Maureen Heinecke, Principal, Lac Qui Parle Valley

The resources provided by MREA to our rural communities are timely, informative, and beneficial, but also imperative to our success as educators in rural Minnesota. For 8 years I was an administrator in the Twin Cities metro area and am in my sixth year as principal of Appleton-Milan Elementary School. Having the background of working in both a metropolitan and rural setting, I will bring a knowledgeable and diverse viewpoint to the board. I grew up in rural Minnesota and know firsthand the wonderful things happening everyday in our rural schools and districts.

Jeff Horton, Superintendent, Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop

I am the new superintendent for GFW Public Schools. I have served as an assistant superintendent, director of special services, principal, as well as an English, Social Studies, and Special Education Teacher in both metro, regional centers, and rural communities. I have also spent time working with legislators and lobbyists to develop and promote legislation that will best serve our communities. My broad experience can help the MREA Board support rural communities.

Mark Miley, Principal, Willmar

I would be honored to serve on the MREA Board. I have been an administrator in the Willmar Public School for the past 24 years and take great pride in developing and mentoring school leaders and aspiring educators in our region and state. I have been a strong advocate for educational initiatives and best practices for all students. I have had the privilege of working in a school district and community that has benefitted from the immersion of diverse students from around the world. If elected, I will work with other rural leaders to bring a voice for rural Minnesota.

Melissa Sparks, 7-12 Principal, MACCRAY

This is my 26th year in education, all working for  MACCRAY school district. I have taught band, worked as a school counselor, and I am now in my sixth year as the 7-12 principal. I am a strong advocate for rural Minnesota and was part of the administrative team that pioneered the four-day week for MACCRAY and received the go-ahead to implement the program from the state 13 years ago. This included visiting with the Education Commissioner and testifying at the legislature. If elected I will do my best to advocate for the interests of all schools in the South Central zone.

Patrick Walsh, Superintendent, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa

I am an ardent supporter of MREA and wish to get involved. I have less contract days than many superintendents and believe I have more time than most. I am in my 23rd year in Administration and have had leadership positions in four school districts, all rural, and am proud of the hand I had in making them more excellent institutions. I was a math and physical education teacher for 10 years and have had leadership positions at the MSHSL, MASCD, MASSP and Phi Beta Kappa. I was selected Division Principal of the Year 3 times in my last 9 years as a Principal.