Dr. John (J.J.) Villarreal lone finalist selected for next RISD Superintendent

Dr. John (J.J.) Villarreal (center) with RISD Board of Trustees and President Linda Mitchell Duran (front row, to right)

Dr. John (J.J.) Villarreal (center) with RISD’s Board of Trustees and Board President Linda Mitchell Duran (second from right)

ROCKWALL – The Rockwall ISD Board of Trustees unanimously named Dr. John (J.J.) E. Villarreal from Carroll ISD in Southlake as the district’s lone finalist to become RISD’s next superintendent during a special board meeting this morning.

Dr. Villarreal has served as the Assistant Superintendent of Student Services since October 2011.

He will replace current Superintendent Dr. Jeff Bailey, who announced in January he will retire as RISD Superintendent effective Aug. 31, 2016.

RISD Board of Trustees President Linda Mitchell Duran said the Board selected Dr. Villarreal for numerous reasons.

“The board took into consideration the voice of the community, parents and staff in making our selection,” she said. “We believe Dr. Villarreal’s philosophy of education, experience in a fast-growth district, career and tech programs, and advancing student performance is what our district needs to continue the foundation of excellence already in Rockwall ISD.”

“His involvement with the Chamber of Commerce in Southlake and Temple along with the Kiwanis Club in Southlake and Rotary Club in Temple shows his readiness to invest in community, which is important to our citizens.”

According to an RISD statement, Dr. Villarreal serves as a leader for curriculum and instruction for one of the highest performing school districts in the state. He supervises 22 direct reports which include principals, Executive Directors for Technology, Curriculum and Instruction, Special Programs, Athletics, and coordinators in Fine Arts, counseling and accountability departments. Dr. Villarreal planned, organized and facilitated the district’s recent strategic plan.

He has also worked with the Temple Independent School District, serving as Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction, high school principal and International Baccalaureate head of school, elementary principal, academic coordinator, Teen Involvement teacher, high school counselor and coach.

He’s held other teaching and assistant principal positions with Belton, Hereford and Abilene ISD.

While in Carroll ISD, he led the district’s standards-based curriculum and instruction team improving student performance at the advanced level which exceeds the state average performance by 300%. Under his leadership, Carroll’s National Merit Scholars and their recognitions increased from 46 students in 2011 to 95 in 2016. Carroll ISD also achieved four consecutive Advanced Placement Honor Roll recognitions for increasing AP course participation and increasing student achievement on AP exams in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015. In the area of career and technology education, he facilitated and completed an audit of all courses to ensure compliance with House Bill 5 graduation endorsement requirements and increased the district’s revenue from weighted student funding.

Dr. Villarreal is also experienced with completing bond projects such as new technology initiatives. He was involved in supporting and facilitating the Capital Needs Planning Committees.

Dr. Villarreal has been married to his wife, Kim, for 24 years. They have three children – Josh (17), Matt (14) and Anna (11).

The school board began their work in January with the hiring of Horn, Smith, Wood and Preston Educational Consultants to partner with on the superintendent search process. The firm conducted a series of staff and community meetings, along with an online survey, in late February and early March to gather the input. The superintendent profile document was presented to the Board of Trustees in late March. The profile was an important part in the selection of the lone finalist.

Members of the school board spent time reviewing over 36 applications for the superintendent position. They conducted initial interviews and follow-up interviews before selecting the lone finalist.

In Texas, candidates for a school superintendent position must wait 21 days after they are named a lone finalist before they can sign a contract.

Dr. John (J.J.) Villarreal Ed.D.


  • Doctor of Education in Educational Administration – Tarleton State University, 2011
  • Master of Education in Educational Administration – Tarleton State University, 2002
  • Master of Education in Counseling and Human Development – Hardin-Simmons University, 1993
  • Bachelor of Science –Hardin-Simmons University, 1991

 Community Involvement and Awards:

  • Southlake Chamber of Commerce, 2011- present
  • Temple Chamber of Commerce Community Impact Award, Temple, Texas 2012
  • Region 12 Advocate of the Gifted, 2011
  • Temple Chamber of Commerce Workforce Committee Chairperson, Temple, Texas 2009-2010





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