New Long Beach Superintendent Follows Family Tradition - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

05/16/03

New Long Beach Superintendent Follows Family Tradition

The new school superintendent in Long Beach is following her father's footsteps.

High school principal, Carrolyn Hamilton, is about to take over a leadership position she's been working toward for years.

She's the daughter of the late Thomas L. Reeves, who was Long Beach school superintendent for some 32 years.

His daughter is now prepared to make her own mark on the school district she loves.

"When she leaves, she's left a big hole that we have to fill," said one high school teacher, as she talked with Carrolyn Hamilton about the principal's new assignment.

The junior Advanced English class applauded when the principal stopped by their classroom. They decorated the hallway bulletin board, praising her promotion.

"We're all going to have to work together. We all want stability. We want the best for our children. And Long Beach is built, to me, around schools. Always has been. It's a family oriented community," said Hamilton.

And this personable educator comes from a family that's long been linked to education in the Long Beach community. Her dad was school superintendent for more than three decades.

She keeps his old name plate in her office, but doesn't feel any pressure in trying to live up to his legacy.

"Dad would never have wanted or expected me to do it exactly like he would. Times have changed. You have to be your own person and you develop your own strengths and go with those," she explained.

One of the biggest challenges facing the new superintendent is restoring some stability to the position. In recent years, the top administrative job has become something of a revolving door. Carrolyn Hamilton becomes the tenth superintendent in the past 13 years.

"I'm hoping that being from the community will help. Knowing the people. Knowing the needs and the feelings of the community I hope will help," Hamilton said.

Before becoming an administrator, Carrolyn Hamilton was a band director for 17 years. She's hoping her leadership will help Long Beach schools hit a high note and hold it for years to come.

She replaces Charles Lyle, who resigned from the superintendent's job one week ago. Hamilton begins her new job on July first.

By Steve Phillips

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