District 210’s Dr. Mary Ticknor named 2023 IASA Superintendent of Distinction


Andrew Kula

After 11 years as superintendent, Ticknor was nominated by colleagues in the Cook South Region, which represents 67 school districts. “It means a lot in that, it [the award] wasn’t something you applied for. It is something that each year provides recognition to school leaders and administrators,” Ticknor said of being nominated and voted on by her peers.

Andrew Kula, Coeditor-in-Chief

On May 3 at an awards luncheon in Springfield, Ticknor was honored as one of 21 Illinois Association of School Administrators (IASA) regional Superintendents of Distinction. The award recognizes administrators from around the state based on their commitment to excellence, dedication and leadership within their school district. 

“It’s an honor to receive this award. But, it’s not an individual award in my opinion. Without the help of Mr. Michaelsen, other administrators, the teachers and of course, the students in this school community, it’s not an individual recognition of myself but the high school,” Ticknor said. 

When it comes to the award itself, Ticknor’s peers nominated and chose her to represent the South Cook region of school districts, which is what truly means the most for her. 

“There’s a governing board for this award and they notice what superintendents and districts accomplish. It’s validating that I was selected by my peers because they know the job,” Ticknor said. 

After all of the accomplishments that Lemont High School has had in the 11 years since Ticknor became superintendent, her choice shows the type of leadership that the IASA looks for every year. 

“Each of these superintendents are great examples of how dynamic leadership can improve the educational environment for students, strengthen communities and continuously push districts forward. Their commitment and dedication to helping students succeed is unwavering, and I applaud each of these honorees for everything they have done to elevate public education in Illinois,” IASA Executive Director Dr. Brent Clark said. 

In regards to the future of the high school and the improvements that the school can offer to its students, Ticknor is ready to see changes to the building itself that gear towards the future. 

“I’m definitely most excited for the renovation and updating of our facilities. It’s so exciting that we are going to truly transform this building for the future,” Ticknor said.