Superintendents of Lewisville, Denton ISDs honored as distinguished alumni

Stephen Waddell (left) and Jamie Wilson with the Matthews Hall display case filled with their career accomplishments.

The College of Education honors Stephen F. Waddell ('75, '96 Ed.D.) and Jamie Wilson ('91, '99 M.Ed., '12 Ed.D.) as distinguished alumni for their inspiring careers and commitment to education. Their diplomas, awards and accomplishments can be viewed in a special display case located on the first floor of Matthews Hall, the main building of the College of Education.

"Not only are Jamie and Steve two of our best doctoral graduates, they are both outstanding school superintendents and leaders of education in Texas," said Jerry R. Thomas, dean of UNT's College of Education. "UNT, Denton and Lewisville ISDs, and the State of Texas are fortunate to have them here."

Waddell has served as superintendent of schools for Lewisville Independent School District in Lewisville, Texas since 2011. Prior to joining the district, he served as superintendent for Birdville ISD, Tuloso-Midway ISD and Sunray ISD. Waddell has 15 years of experience as a superintendent and 30 years in education. He began his career as a teacher and also served as a principal and high school counselor.

Waddell earned his bachelor's and doctorate degrees from UNT. "I've had a great career. It has been beyond my expectations, and it wouldn't have happened without my degrees from UNT," he said. "I was very well prepared and I'm very proud of being an alumnus of the University of North Texas."

"I can think of no more satisfying career than one in public education," said Waddell. "If someone wants a career that can change lives and communities this is one that can."

Wilson began serving as superintendent for Denton Independent School District in 2012 and joined the district in 2005 as assistant superintendent for secondary academic programs.

Previously, Wilson served in various educational leadership positions for the Keller and Aubrey school districts. In Keller ISD, he was a principal at Keller High and also served as assistant principal, science department chair, coach and teacher. He also was principal at Aubrey and a biology teacher and assistant coach at A&M Consolidated High School.

Wilson earned his bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees from UNT. He received the Outstanding Doctoral Student in Educational Administration Award from the College of Education in 2012.

"I have all three of my degrees from UNT, so North Texas is a big part of my life," said Wilson. "I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world."

Both of Wilson's parents earned their degrees from UNT, and he knew he wanted to pursue studies in education at UNT from a young age. "I wanted to do something to make a difference – not just for each individual kid, but for the world in general – to have citizens that are productive, that are civic-minded, and who give back and understand the importance of doing something for each other. Trying to instill those values and beliefs systems is important."

"I think UNT embodies that itself," added Wilson. "You can go to UNT and be an art major, a music major, a school teacher, an engineer, a business professional. You can do it all."


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