The Kansas Board of Regents President and Chief Executive Officer, Andy Tompkins, announced his retirement Wednesday following 46 years of public service in education and five years as CEO of the Board.
“As a means of introduction, I have spent most of my career as an educator in leadership roles,” Tompkins said in a letter prior to his appointment in Feb. of 2010. “Leading any agency or organization at the state level is an important responsibility and privilege. As such, I believe that it is best served by those who see this as an honor and who lead from a perspective of servant leadership.”
During his tenure Tompkins personified servant leadership.
“What I ultimately discovered in my late 20’s and early 30’s, was that being in service to a broader good was much more fulfilling. In essence, ‘we’ became more important than ‘me’,” he said at the Pittsburg State University Apple Day celebration early last month.
“Tompkins has served at all levels of public education throughout his career, beginning as high school English teacher in 1969,” according to a press release from the Board. “He became a Principal in 1973, then served as Superintendent of Schools in Satanta, El Dorado and Salina from 1977-1994. In 1994, he was hired by Pittsburg State University as Chair and Associate Professor in the Department of Special Services and Leadership Studies. He then went on to serve as Interim Dean for the College of Education (1995-1996), a position he returned to as Dean from 2007-2010. In 1996, he was asked to serve as the Commissioner of Education for the Kansas Department of Education, a role he continued in through 2005. From 2005-2007 he was an Associate Professor at the University of Kansas, teaching in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies.”
“The Board simply could not feel more positive about the job Dr. Tompkins has done,” said Kenny Wilk, KBOR Chairman. “We are so grateful for his dedicated service to this Board and to the State of Kansas.”
Tompkins intends to step down at the end of June 2015.