MCPHERSON USD 418 SUPERINTENDENT GORDON MOHN
A PERSON MAKING EDUCATION IN MCPHERSON COUNTY TICK!
By William for http://www.mcpherson-county-ks.com
LITTLE RIVER – With this profile of the People of Education in McPherson County – we focus on Superintendent Gordon Mohn of McPherson USD 418!
So many folks work hard at making the educating of our future generations work, that we feel it is important to know who they are and get to know a little bit about them, their job, their background and what makes them tick in making their work within their school district tick.
WHO IS GORDON MOHN?
Gordon Mohn was born and raised just 20 minutes east of McPherson in Hillsboro, Kansas where he graduated from Hillsboro High School in 1968.
Mohn and his wife Vicky have three adult children and 11 grandchildren.
Their oldest son Jason is married to Rachel and they have four children. Jason lives in Wilmette, Illinois where he is a chaplain at Northwestern University. Jason and Rachel’s oldest daughter was married last summer, which with Jason’s new son-in-law gave Gordon and his wife grandchild number 11.
Second son, Jeremy, and his wife Kristy are graduates of the University of Kansas and have two daughters. Jeremy is also in education and is a teacher at Blue Valley Northwest in Overland Park, Kansas where he teaches Honors Biology and AP Environmental Science.
The Mohn’s daughter Jennifer is also their youngest as well as the one that lives furthest from home in Soldotna, Alaska. Jennifer and her husband Justin have four children, two boys and two girls. Justin is the Director of Aircraft Maintenance for Samaritan’s Purse that supports the agencies mission outreach throughout Alaska.
Gordon Mohn has noted to others many times that work was both his job and his hobby as attending district athletic, music and drama events has occupied a very large part of his life outside of the office itself.
Mohn does proclaim an interest in American History and Government which is why he established a goal of reading a biography of every president, of which he points out that he only needs six more biographies to complete his goal.
Like many of those who make their career as an educator in one sense or another, Mohn did spend several summers during his early years in education as a house painter, something that he and his two sons did for over 10 years.
For the past 25 years, Mohn has helped his wife Vicky with her ownership and principle instructor of a dance studio. Mohn acknowledges that he does not help with the dancing but does help Vicky with the financial and technical performance parts of the business and is proud to remember the memories built from hosting more than 70 dance recitals in those past 25 years.
WHAT DID GORDAON MOHN DO BEFORE ARRIVING HERE?
Before originally arriving in McPherson in 2007 as the new Director of McPherson County Special Education Cooperative, Mohn had already spent 35 years in education.
After high school, Mohn stuck around Hillsboro and attended Tabor College, where he graduated in the spring of 1972 with a major in history and physical education.
Heading west, Mohn began his lengthy career in education as a teacher for nine years (1972-1981) at Jetmore High School where he taught World History, American History, American Government while also serving as the Head football and track coach, an assistant basketball coach and a school bus driver.
After receiving his master’s degree in School Administration from Fort Hays State University in 1980, Mohn made a move to north central Kansas where he began tenure as an Assistant Principal at Belleville High School. While at Belleville he also served as the activity’s director, curriculum coordinator, food service director and the director overseeing school transportation. Mohn’s time at Belleville ran for eight years from 1981-1989.
In the fall of 1989, Mohn returned to his hometown and took over as Principal of Hillsboro High School, a position he held until 1992 when he became Superintendent of Schools for Hillsboro USD 410.
After 15 years as Superintendent in Hillsboro, Mohn and his wife decided that he needed one more job in education before his planned retirement in 2020 and while decided that where they lived was important, Mohn accepted a position as Director of the McPherson County Special Education Cooperative in 2007, a position which he thought would be his final stop.
When then USD 418 Superintendent Mark Crawford unexpectedly resigned in November of 2016, the Board of Education asked if he would serve as an Interim Superintendent, which he did until later in the school year when the Board invited him to serve as the new Superintendent.
Mohn accepted the offer on the contention that he would work until the end of the 2019-20 school year at the latest before retiring.
WHAT DOES YOUR CURRENT POSITION REQUIRE OF YOU?
When it came to questions regarding the position he currently holds as Superintendent for USD 418, one finds out that Mohn is a man with few words as he simply stated that his position requires him to supply overall leadership for the entire district and that directly or indirectly, responsibility in all areas of the USD 418 operations reflect back to him.
WHAT IS THE OUTLOOK FOR THE CURRENT AND FUTURE OF USD 418 (in his words)?
Mohn was asked about some of his more favorite things and/or events that surround his position as Superintendent of USD 418, of which he replied:
- “I get to support programs that promote and further student success.”
- “The opportunity of supporting the hiring and retention of staff, administrators, teachers and all other support staff.”
- “Working with and assisting the Board of Education in the overall development and implementation of all strategic plans to further the success of the district.”
Does Mohn find any situations about being Superintendent as being somewhat difficult?
- “Sometimes it is difficult in trying to insure that ‘all’ students have the same opportunities for success.”
- “Difficult is a word used when we are required to work with and allocate using limited resources.”
What does Mohn maybe define as the most rewarding working within USD 418?
- “I thoroughly enjoy seeing remarkable adults working in education make connections with students and parents every day in ways that promotes success for each and every student they are working with.”
At last but not least, since Mohn is planning to retire as Superintendent of USD 418 at the end of the 2019-20 school year, we wondered what he had plans for in the future?
- “Despite the fact that I will retire from working in education for 48 years at the end of June in 2020, my wife and I have no definite long-term plans for retirement.”
- “Well, we do have one big plan ahead and that is to drive to Alaska next July to visit our daughter, son-in-law and the four grandchildren. We are planning for the 3,600-mile trip to take us at least two weeks so we can enjoy the scenery along the roadways between Kansas and Alaska.”
OUR FINAL THOUGHTS:
There you have it folks, once again we have given you an introduction and insight to another of our many strong, faithful and positive administrative leaders found within the many fine and outstanding school districts within the McPherson County area.
Gordon Mohn, Superintendent of McPherson USD 418, is a prime example of one who has given his all to the betterment of education. A man who has found total enjoyment and wonder at those opportunities given to him to lead not one, but two solid school districts for the sake and future of each and every student those districts have had the opportunity to teach.
We recommend or request, that if you have the opportunity you should give Gordon Mohn a greeting with a smile and a hearty handshake of thanks for being willing to push the McPherson USD 418 staff and students to the next levels of education success.
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