Celebrating A Leader Who Helped Build Our Schools

Celebrating A Leader Who Helped Build Our Schools

The district is excited to announce Dr. Rick Schulte, RSD's former superintendent, as the district's winner of the 2021 Community Leadership Award of Southeast Washington Association of School Administrators (SEWASA).

Current Superintendent Dr. Shelley Redinger and Nancy Mayer, executive assistant to Dr. Redinger and the Richland School Board, recently presented the award to Dr. Schulte during the annual SEWASA banquet. They also gave him an inscribed brick of the former district administration building where his office was located before district offices relocated to the Teaching, Learning & Administration Center in West Richland.

Dr. Schulte joined RSD in mid-2012 after spending a decades-long career as superintendent of the Oak Harbor School District. He led the district through transformative changes during his eight years at the helm, when enrollment grew by hundreds of students.

  • Following voter approval of two bonds, Dr. Schulte oversaw numerous construction projects, including two new elementary schools and a middle school, six rebuilt elementary schools, repurposing of the former Jefferson Elementary into the Early Learning Center, building of a dedicated facility for Three Rivers HomeLink, construction of academic and athletic facilities at Richland and Hanford high schools and more.
  • Voters continued to support local levies for schools that provided funding for staff, curriculum, athletics, activities and more. The district's 1:1 Technology Initiative also first received voter support through a new technology levy in 2018.
  • Led the district's establishment of full-day kindergarten ahead of the state's mandate.
  • Managed district operations through two difficult winters with heavy snow and ice that led to multiple days of school closures and broader impacts to everything from transportation to nutrition services.

Dr. Schulte delayed his retirement by one year as the Richland School Board conducted a search for his successor. That meant he also led the district through the initial months of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

His dedication to our community, families and schools has left a legacy of service that will benefit RSD students for years to come.