Home News SLP to Head of Arizona Department of Education

SLP to Head of Arizona Department of Education

by Carol Polovoy
Arizona flag with pile of books isolated on white background

Democrat Kathy Hoffman, a speech-language pathologist in the Peoria (Arizona) Unified School District, won a tight race to become Arizona’s superintendent of public instruction in the Nov. 4 election.

The novice politician was declared the winner over Frank Riggs, an experienced politician, after a post-election vote count, according to a report on ABC15-Arizona.

A first-time candidate, Hoffman won two political upsets—first by besting David Schapira, a veteran politician, in the Democratic primary over the summer, and then by narrowly overtaking Riggs, a former California congressman who also headed a nonprofit group that helped charter schools with funding.

Hoffman, who will lead the Arizona Department of Education, was propelled by grassroots educators who took action during the #RedForEd teachers’ strike last spring. The unprecedented teacher strike in May shut down Arizona public schools for nearly a week, after which the governor signed a plan that gives teachers pay raises that will reach 20 percent by 2020.

As superintendent, Hoffman will oversee the department’s programs and bureaucracy. Look for a profile of Hoffman in an upcoming issue of the Leader.

Carol Polovoy is managing editor of The ASHA Leader. cpolovoy@asha.org

Related Articles