Tomball’s Dr. Martha Salazar-Zamora named Superintendent of the Year
HOUSTON (May 30, 2023)—Dr. Martha Salazar-Zamora, superintendent of Tomball Independent School District, has been named the 2023 Region 4 Superintendent of the Year. Salazar-Zamora is the Region 4 nominee for the 2023 Texas Superintendent of the Year program, sponsored by the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA) and the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB). Regional winners will be interviewed August 25–26, and five state finalists will be selected. The Superintendent of the Year will be announced September 29, 2023, at the txEDCON23 TASA | TASB Convention.
Salazar-Zamora has served in her current position for six years and previously served in the district as Chief Academic Officer. Under her leadership, Tomball ISD has transformed its curriculum, eliminating curriculum audit deficit findings and becoming a model for other districts. The district has received numerous awards since Salazar-Zamora took the helm and was recently ranked by Niche as the best school district in Harris County. Niche also named Tomball ISD the best place to teach and the district with the best teachers in both Harris County and the Greater Houston area.
“The Tomball ISD Board is thrilled to see Dr. Z awarded for her tireless efforts,” said Lee McLeod, President, Tomball ISD Board of Trustees. “Whether it is promoting teacher improvement through collaborative learning communities or dreaming up innovative initiatives to equip our students to become tomorrow's workforce, Dr. Z is helping the district achieve new distinctions and recognition like never before.”
Salazar-Zamora has built exceptionally strong ties in the community, resulting in the passage of two separate bonds. The first, passed in 2017, included new campuses and a state-of-the-art district stadium and came in under budget and on time. A second bond, passed in 2021, is in progress and includes the construction of a third high school, construction of four other campuses, and renovations to the previously-purchased commercial/industrial complex for conversion to a multipurpose education facility. Salazar-Zamora’s focus on the pursuit of academic success while maintaining fiscal responsibility has garnered the district consistent Five-Star ratings from TXSmartSchools, and the district has successfully used its financial excellence to avoid raising taxes.
Salazar-Zamora also oversaw the partnership between the district and Texas A&M University during the COVID-19 pandemic to provide small-group instruction to students. More than 100 preservice teachers provided remote instruction to Tomball students, helping the district meet students’ learning needs. The district was then able to quickly address student learning loss upon students’ return to the classroom, resulting in a straight A accountability rating from the state.
“Dr. Salazar-Zamora is a shining example of excellence in educational leadership,” said Dr. Rodney Watson, executive director, Region 4 Education Service Center. “Her tireless devotion to building a warm, close-knit learning community that addresses the whole student serves as an exemplar for education leaders across the state. Her recognition as the 2023 Region 4 Superintendent of the Year is a testament to her remarkable leadership and dedication to academic excellence. Under her guidance, Tomball ISD has achieved transformative outcomes earning her district numerous accolades. We congratulate her for this well-deserved recognition and wish her the best in her nomination for Texas Superintendent of the Year.”
About the Texas Association of School Administrators and Texas Association of School Boards Superintendent of the Year Program
The Superintendent of the Year program, established in 1984, recognizes exceptional administrators who have demonstrated achievement and excellence in public school administration. This prestigious award celebrates school leaders who exhibit exemplary and visionary leadership in their efforts to enhance student performance.
Superintendents chosen for this recognition possess strong leadership skills, a deep commitment to improving the quality of education within their districts, and a dedication to fostering public support and involvement in education. These individuals are recognized for their outstanding contributions to the field of education and for their tireless efforts to create positive learning environments for students.
The award program serves as a platform to inspire continued professional growth and acknowledge the exceptional work of these administrators, highlighting their accomplishments and the positive impact they have made on their districts. The Superintendent of the Year program has been instrumental in honoring and showcasing the achievement of exemplary administrators who exhibit outstanding leadership, dedication, and a commitment to improving student performance and the quality of education in their districts. Superintendents from the state’s more than 1,000 independent school districts are eligible for nomination by their school boards.
About Region 4 Education Service Center
Region 4 Education Service Center (Region 4), located in Houston, is one of 20 service centers established by the Texas Legislature in 1967. The purposes of the service centers, as presented in legislation, are to assist school districts in improving student performance, to enable school districts to operate more efficiently and economically, and to implement initiatives assigned by the Legislature or Commissioner of Education. The core purpose of Region 4 is to provide excellence in service for children.
Region 4 serves an eight-county area comprising 48 public school districts and 41 open-enrollment charter schools. As the largest service center in Texas, Region 4 serves an education community of more than 1.2 million students, more than 165,000 professional educators, and 1,500 campuses.