New Superintendent Gets Acquainted with GUSD

Photo by Mary O’KEEFE
Dr. Vivian Ekchian, the new superintendent for the Glendale Unified School District, extends her hand when greeting a district staff member during a recent tour of Glendale schools.


Dr. Vivian Ekchian spent her first day, July 1, as Glendale Unified School District superintendent visiting several district schools. She spoke with students, teachers and staff in an effort to familiarize herself with the district and its needs. She will continue her tour of local schools in the upcoming weeks.

Ekchian is making it a priority to meet the staff of the district offices as well. She served as deputy superintendent of Los Angeles Unified School District and is familiar with student diversity. She said she wants to help students become competitive not just throughout the state but also globally.

“I want to partner with other school districts,” she said.

Although districts throughout California are varied they do share commonalities.

“I would like to build a coalition of partners in and out of Glendale,” she added.

Her approach in leading the Glendale district, with 33 public schools and over 25,000 students, is the “personalization of learning for our students and the community.”

Kelly King, who acted as interim superintendent after the departure of former superintendent Winfred Roberson, said she is excited about working alongside Ekchian.

“I could not be more pleased with Dr. Ekchian,” she said adding that Ekchian brings to the district her years of experience as an educator and community leader.

“I am very excited to work alongside her,” King said.

Ekchian does have a long history in the field of education including serving as a teacher assistant, classroom teacher, principal, director of instruction and chief labor negotiator.

“We had a strong field of highly qualified candidates and we are confident that Dr. Ekchian is the right person to lead GUSD,” stated board of education President Jennifer Freemon in a district release. “She is a lifelong educator with extensive experience running a large, diverse district.”