The Omaha Public Schools will be getting a new communications director as well as a new superintendent next school year.
Luanne Nelson, director of communications for the district, is retiring. Her last day with the district was today.
Retiring Superintendent John Mackiel has appointed Kailyn Watson, a district communications specialist, to serve as director until the end of the school year, May 18.
OPS is in the midst of interviewing three finalists for superintendent, with the last of those interviews and public “meet and greet” sessions Friday.
The communications position will be posted shortly after a new superintendent is hired, Nelson said.
The superintendent search had no effect on her decision to retire, she said. She said she had been thinking about retiring for a couple of years and decided months ago that the timing was right for her to leave.
The OPS retirement office said she could leave on her birthday — March 30 — or stay until August. She chose her 64th birthday.
“It was best for me personally to leave at this time,” Nelson said.
Nelson joined the Omaha Schools Foundation in 1992 as its associate director. She became executive director the next year.
In early 1997, she became the interim director of OPS communications before being named the full-time director of district communications that June. She retained her Omaha Schools Foundation position as well.
Mackiel was appointed OPS superintendent in 1997.
In 2010, Nelson retired from her foundation position.
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