The West Virginia Association of School Administrators (WVASA) is pleased to announce the selection of Blaine C. Hess, as the 2021 WV Superintendent of the Year. Hess has served as the Superintendent of Jackson County Schools for the past 14 years, where he also serves as chairman of the Roane-Jackson Technical Center Administrative Council, and as a member of the Jackson County Development Authority, and the Jackson County Anti-Drug Coalition.

Hess, a graduate of Herbert Hoover High School, earned a B.A. in Music Education from Alderson-Broaddus College and his M.A. in Leadership Studies from West Virginia Graduate College, now Marshall University. Before his current post as superintendent, his 37-year career in public education has included various positions such as teacher, assistant principal, principal, and director of secondary education.

Hess just completed a second term as President of WVASA and was recently re-elected to an additional term on the Executive Committee of the American Association of School Administrators (AASA). Previous honors include 1992 WV Bandmaster of the Year, Honorary Degrees from the Future Farmers of America (FFA) at the local and state level, 2013 WV Superintendent of the Year, and the 2017 WV Music Educators Superintendent of the Year.

Through his partnership with the Jackson County Board of Education and the historically strong financial support of county residents through an excess levy, Jackson County Schools secured funding from the School Building Authority of West Virginia for the construction of two new schools and several significant school renovations. In addition, the county has completed a 1:1 technology initiative which includes the assignment of a MacBook to all high school students and iPads for students at the elementary level. Jackson County Schools is a recognized leader in student achievement through strong growth in literacy and mathematics. Jackson County Schools is expanding project-based learning in grades K-12 through Project Lead the Way (PLTW) as a systemic approach to increasing the rigor and relevance of the learning in classrooms across the county.

Hess will represent West Virginia as a candidate for the 2021 AASA National Superintendent of the Year which will be announced at the National Education Conference in February 2021.