Dr. Rick Schulte, Superintendent

Superintendent Dr. Rick Schulte

Born and raised in the Midwest, Superintendent Dr. Rick Schulte studied philosophy at Georgetown University before studying teaching at the University of Montana. He earned his master's from University of Washington and his doctorate from Seattle University.

He served in the Peace Corps and has had a career in education spanning several decades, including positions as a teacher and administrator in Montana, on the Quinault Indian Reservation and Bainbridge Island and in Bremerton. He served as superintendent of Oak Harbor Public Schools on Whidbey Island for more than 20 years. He became superintendent of Richland School District in July 2013

Dr. Schulte has guided the district through two bond measures worth nearly $200 million during his tenure, opening several new and rebuilt elementary and middle schools as the district added thousands of students. He’s also led the district through several initiatives, including implementation of full-day kindergarten, launching the district’s 1:1 Technology Initiative and early education programs such as the new Early Learning Center.

Dr. Nicole MacTavish, Deputy Superintendent

Successor Superintendent Dr. Nicole MacTavish

Dr. Nicole MacTavish grew up in Kent, Wash., and came up through the schools of the Kent School District. She became the first member of her family to attend and graduate from college, earning bachelor’s degrees in English Literature and Communication from University of Washington in 1994. She then spent the next two years earning a Master’s in Education from UW as well as her teaching credential before embarking on a career in education she had long dreamed of.  

Over the next 20 years, Dr. MacTavish served as a school counselor, English language arts teacher and ASB adviser as well as school- and district-level administrator in school districts across the Pacific Northwest. She also operated the Boys & Girls Club of America for the children of military families at the U.S base in Stuttgart, Germany when her husband, John, a U.S Navy veteran, was stationed there. She holds a principal certification from Western Washington University and a doctorate from Seattle University.

She is committed to making Richland schools a place where learning is joyful and each student has the opportunity to prepare for a successful and fulfilling life. She also is a board member for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton & Franklin Counties. Her husband John works as a computer programmer since retiring from the Navy and their son Try is an elementary student in the district.