National award winner tabbed as Commencement keynote speaker

Matt Utterback ’89Matt Utterback ’89; photo courtesy of Lifetouch.

WOU alumnus Matt Utterback ’89 won the National Superintendent of the Year Award in March from the American Association of School Administrators (AASA). He also has been selected as the keynote speaker at WOU’s Commencement on June 17.

Utterback has been superintendent at North Clackamas School District since 2012, and during that time the district has made major gains in graduation rates and test scores, particularly for low-income, minority and special education students.

Utterback earned high marks from the AASA for leading his district to major progress despite budget restrictions, school closures and the lackluster test scores he inherited. “This award recognizes leadership at the highest level,” said Mark Girod, dean of the College of Education.

While at Western Oregon State College, as it was known at the time, Utterback majored in education and earned a teaching certificate in social studies and integrated science. WOSC was where he started dating his future wife, Nancy, who also is an ’89 alum. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education with a language arts certificate and has been a teacher in the North Clackamas district for many years.