Kimberly Wilson-Davis will become superintendent of Tolles Career and Technical Center on Aug. 1, coming from a similar position at the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center in Bellefontaine.
She replaces Carl J. Berg, who is retiring.
During her eight years at Hi-Point, the school more than doubled the number of students it served.
“That’s an impact on the regional work force development and something we are all proud of,” she said.
Davis brings a long background in career education to Tolles, dating back to the 1970s when she was a vocational student at Madeira High School near Cincinnati.
“I was taking shorthand because I wanted to be a journalist,” she said. “My teacher encouraged me to enroll in the business and vocational program. She was the person who encouraged me to become a teacher. I guess she saw something in me that I didn’t.”
Wilson-Davis attended Bowling Green State University where she majored in business education. She was a business teacher at career centers and high schools for 14 years before turning her attention to administration at Dayton Stebbins where she was the career technical director. She also earned her master’s degree from Xavier University in personnel training and development.
After a year at Stebbins, she was lured into the education publishing field, taking her back to her first career idea of becoming a journalist.
“I was an editor for three years for the company I worked for during college,” she said. “But I missed teaching. I returned to teaching and never looked back.”
She enrolled at Wright State University and earned an educational specialists degree. That is a post master’s degree since Wright State doesn’t have a doctoral program, she explained.
Wilson-Davis stressed the importance of the type of educational opportunities found in the career and technical schools, drawing on her own experience.
“You can parlay the technical education into a career,” she said. “With the skills I received I never needed to worry about getting a job. I never worked in the fast food industry. I always had a job in a business office that paid well and offered better working conditions.”
She is passionate about what is done in the schools.
“It can be an end point or just a beginning,” Davis said. “It can open doors and opportunities for continuing education.”
She still harks back to writing skills, but uses them in a different way today.
“I am so grateful to have honed my writing skills through education,” she said.
She uses those skills in writing reports and proposals that she does as part of her work.
“I have the ability to put words on paper and try to convince others to accept a proposal. I have to be able to be clear and concise and write well. I feel it’s an important part of any student’s education.”
One of her hobbies is bicycling.
“I love to ride my bike,” she said. “It’s where I do my best thinking. My favorite way to see a place is on a bicycle.”
She has ridden a bicycle all over the United States and in Europe with southern Italy being one of her favorite places to visit.