The County Superintendent is elected by the voters of Sonoma County. The Superintendent is a state constitutional officer who acts as a go-between for local school districts and the state. The Superintendent provides leadership, support, and state-designated fiscal and program oversight for the county's 40 school districts and their roughly 71,000 students. This position also serves as the chief executive officer of the Sonoma County Office of Education (SCOE).
Get to know the superintendent
Steven D. Herrington, Ph.D., was elected Sonoma County Superintendent of Schools in 2010. He took office on January 3, 2011, and began a second term in office on January 2, 2015. He is a native Californian who began his career in education as a history teacher. He served as superintendent for three Northern California school districts. In these positions, he gained experience in rural, suburban, and urban settings. He has led educational services for students from pre-kindergarten through high school. Prior to his election, he was superintendent of Windsor Unified School District.
Dr. Herrington is a Vietnam Era veteran who served in the United States Army and National Guard. He and his wife, a former writer and editor for Walt Disney Productions, live in Windsor. They have two grown children, both graduates of California public schools and its university system. Their daughter is a project director supporting charter school teachers for the North Coast Teacher Induction Program in the east bay. Their son works as chief account manager for a technology company in Cupertino.
As a district superintendent, Dr. Herrington was recognized with several state and national awards. These included:
- A National School Boards Association Magna Award
- Four California School Boards Association Golden Bell Awards
- Eight Distinguished School Awards from the California Department of Education
- California Governor’s Award for Community Service Collaboration
As County Superintendent, he received on behalf of SCOE a special recognition by the White House for SCOE's Make certificate program for teachers.
The county superintendent's education initiatives have focused on service to students, service to districts, and service to the community. He believes that one of the best ways to maximize support for education is through community-linked collaborative projects. Current projects are centered on building:
- A well-educated, career-ready workforce
- A vital, healthy, and engaged student community
- Educational programs that support early literacy for all students
- A countywide cadre of teaching professionals using 21st century teaching methods to fully engage young people in learning
Dr. Herrington ensures that SCOE focuses its efforts on the key areas listed above in order to best serve schools, students, and community. Each year, he sets an Educational Agenda (pdf) for the Sonoma County Office of Education. Then, his leadership team set goals for themselves and their departments linked to that agenda. In 2015-16, he set the goal of creating a training center to provide working adults with the training and support they need to earn a teaching credential. This effort was in response to Sonoma County’s growing teacher shortage.The new training center is called the North Coast School of Education. Dr. Herrington continues to pursue and expand teaching program opportunities for people living in Sonoma County.
Community Affiliations10,000 Degrees, Sonoma County Advisory Board
California County Superintendents Educational Services Association, Executive Board
Northern California Career Pathways Partnership
Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce
Santa Rosa Violence Prevention Partnership
School and College Legal Services of California, JPA Board
Sonoma County Community Corrections Partnership
Sonoma County Education Coalition
Sonoma County Health Action
Sonoma County Innovation Council
Sonoma County Proposition 63 Mental Health Advisory Board
Sonoma County Redevelopment Agency Oversight Board
Sonoma County Upstream Investments, Executive Committee
Sonoma County Workforce Investment Board
United Way of the Wine Country, Board of Directors
Communications & Interagency Support
Staff in the county superintendent's office provide communications, public relations, and interagency support for SCOE. This includes: Print and electronic publications, news releases, social media communications, and the SCOE website. Staff also support communication between SCOE and county, state, and community groups that provide services to schools and students.
- Jamie Hansen, Communications Specialist
- Steven Herrington, Superintendent of Schools
- Kristen Johnson, Agency Outreach Coordinator
- Kimberly Vallée, Executive Assistant