School Board Approves New Administrators

The Okaloosa County School Board approved the following new administrators at the May 28, 2019, School Board Meeting: Amy Anderson as the Principal of Richbourg School, Jason Driver as the Principal of Lewis School, Tammy Matz as Principal of Plew Elementary School, Lisa Jones as Assistant Principal of Longwood, and Scott Huerkamp as Assistant Principal of the Okaloosa Technical College.

Amy Anderson – Principal, Richbourg School

Amy Anderson – Principal, Richbourg School, at School Board meeting

As a product and employee of Okaloosa County Schools, Amy Anderson is excited to be able to use her training and experiences gained in Special Education in her new role as Principal of Richbourg School. She has been a teacher for students with autism in a self-contained classroom (students on regular and special standards), has earned an Autism Endorsement, and has received extensive, practical, and theoretical training on communication and behavior through multiple outlets, including Okaloosa School District.

Anderson has also been the Assistant Principal at Mary Esther Elementary School for four years. She is a graduate of Florida State University with a bachelor's degree in English Literature. She earned a master's degree in Educational Leadership, an Education Specialist Degree, and is currently pursuing her doctorate all at the University of West Florida.

Married to John Anderson, Amy and her husband have a son, Ian, who is, like his mother, is a graduate of Niceville High School and Northwest Florida State College. Amy is looking forward to meeting and working with the families, staff, and faculty of Richbourg School.

Dr. Jason Driver – Principal, Lewis School

Dr. Jason Driver – Principal, Lewis School, at School Board meeting

Dr. Jason Driver was born into an Air Force family and spent his life living around the globe, to include ten years in Europe. His family moved to Okaloosa County in 1987, where he attended and graduated from Choctawhatchee High School. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Religion from Florida State University; a master’s degree in Counseling and Psychology from Troy University; and a specialist degree in Educational Leadership and a Doctor of Education degree in Curriculum and Instruction / Diversity Studies both from the University of West Florida. Since 2006, he has presented and been invited to present at regional, national, and overseas conferences on college readiness, school leadership, and mentor development.

Dr. Driver started working in Okaloosa County in 1998 at Crestview High School, where he eventually served as the Assistant Principal of Instruction in 2002. Since 201,1 he has served as the Assistant Principal for Lewis School, and in that time was an adjunct instructor for the Teacher Education program at Northwest Florida State College. He enjoys reading, writing, travel, and spending time with his thirteen-year-old son, Brendan Joel. Dr. Driver is looking forward to continuing to serve and support the teachers and students of Lewis School.

Tammy Matz – Principal, Plew Elementary School

Tammy Matz – Principal, Plew Elementary School, at School Board Meeting

Tammy Matz joined Okaloosa County School District in 2013, following 26 years of service within the Penn Harris Madison School District in Indiana. Her career began as a Kindergarten, First and Third-grade teacher. Her experiences include Director of extended day Kindergarten and Director of Total Quality Effective Schools, before being named an Assistant Principal at Grissom Middle School. She ended her career in Indiana as the principal of Grissom only to move to “paradise” and become the Principal at Riverside Elementary for the past 6 years.

Matz grew up in Indiana and received her undergraduate and master’s degree from Ball State University in Elementary Education. She earned her professional educator’s license for administration from Indiana University.

Tammy views a collaborative school environment as the key to creating successful teachers and students. She believes partnerships with parents and community stakeholders are essential to enriching the experience at Plew Elementary and embraces change. She is excited about her new adventures at Plew Elementary!

During her free time, Matz enjoys fishing, reading, and spending time on her boat with her family and puppy, Stella!

Lisa Jones – Assistant Principal, Longwood Elementary School

Lisa Jones – Assistant Principal, Longwood Elementary School, at School Board Meeting

Lisa Jones graduated from the University of West Florida with a degree in Biology and Medical Technology and spent ten years working in a hospital. She soon realized that she had a passion for teaching children so she began her teaching career in Escambia County. In 2001, she moved to Okaloosa County where she began teaching Biology and coaching cheerleaders at Niceville High School. During her time at Niceville, she continued to grow as a classroom teacher, but it was her participation in a three-year-long Biology Partnership where she collaborated and built relationships with educators statewide that started a new goal for her professional career.

In 2008, Jones went back to the University of West Florida to earn her master’s degree in Educational Leadership. She joined Curriculum and Instruction in 2015 as a Science Instructional Coach for the district. It was this role that allowed her to see the broader vision of how all the pieces work together for students to accomplish great things. As an instructional coach, she has written and facilitated professional development for teachers ranging from kindergarten through Biology. She has supported individual teachers in the classroom by modeling lessons with embedded English Language Arts (ELA) and math strategies. At the state level, Jones has served on the Biology EOC test item review committee for the Florida Department of Education, and she has served as a content writer and facilitator for the State of Florida’s Summer Science STEMposium. She is committed to helping students achieve their full potential by empowering them to be successful in all areas of their education!

Jones is thankful for the love and support of her family, Dave, daughters Megan, Jordan, and Nicole, two sons-in-law (Cody and Bo) and her precious granddaughter Annabelle. She is also thankful for the great friends and co-workers that she works alongside every day!

Scott Huerkamp – Assistant Principal, Okaloosa Technical College

Scott Huerkamp – Assistant Principal, Okaloosa Technical College

Scott Huerkamp is a product of the Okaloosa School system.  He attended Longwood Elementary School, Meigs Junior High School, and is a graduate of Choctawhatchee High School.  He later attended Florida State University where he earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Management, a master’s degree in Social Science Education, and a specialist degree in Educational Leadership.

Huerkamp has been in education for 24 years and has taught at the middle school, high school, and collegiate levels. For the last five years, he has taught Cybersecurity and AP Computer Science at Niceville High School. During that time, he has helped grow the Cybersecurity program from 50 students to more than 140, while at the same time increasing the rigor by providing his students the opportunity to earn a multitude of industry-based certifications.

This year many of Scott's fourth-year students will be graduating having earned four Microsoft Certifications and up to three CompTIA Certifications including their A+, Net+ and Security+ certs, all of which are in high demand in today’s workforce. As you can tell, he has a passion for career and technical education.  Huerkamp's new role at Okaloosa Technical College (OTC) will be to help the school meet its mission of serving our community by providing our students with access to the training, skills, and certifications that they will need to successfully take their place and excel in our ever-changing workforce.