Moore is Wake County‘s first female, Latina school superintendent

The Wake County Board of Education on Wednesday named Cathy Moore as the new superintendent of the state’s largest school district.

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Moore, who will be Wake County‘s first female superintendent, had been the system’s deputy superintendent for academic advancement in September 2011. Moore will also be the county‘s first Latina school superintendent.

She has spent almost all of her 30-year public education career educating Wake County students.

Moore began her career as a teacher in the Nash-Rocky Mount Public School System before working as an assistant principal at Apex and Enloe Magnet high schools.

She served as principal of Sanderson High School from 2000 to 2008 before serving as an area superintendent for the central region of Wake County from 2008 to 2011.

School leaders say the North Carolina School Boards Association lead a nationwide search. The applications came in and were narrowed down from 20 applicants to a final pick.

“The board was extremely pleased to find the best person for the job was right here at home,” a WCPSS spokesperson said in a release. “Board members feel strongly that Ms. Moore’s leadership, long-term experience in WCPSS, and her dedication to students will serve the students, staff, and community well for years to come.”

Board members say having a new superintendent comes at a crucial time.

“To hire a new superintendent, the next superintendent, [is big] at a time like this, where we really see the community speaking out about their commitment to public education,” said Monika Johnson-Hostler, Wake County school board chair.

The announcement comes a week after to ask state lawmakers for a greater investment in public education. The new superintendent will be taking over the job from Dr. Del Burns, who stepped into the role as interim superintendent earlier this year. Burns, who was superintendent from 2006 to 2010, said he had no desire to return to the job permanently.

Moore earned a bachelor’s degree in French language and literature from North Carolina State University and a master’s of school administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is pursuing a doctoral degree at East Carolina University.