Meet Our New VP – Aaryn Schmuhl

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
A: I have nearly 20 years of experience in education. I have served as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal, and district office leader. I believe that it is a leader’s job to remove barriers, but also to imagine and define a new way of being in organizations. Leaders must also empower those they work with to have agency and use that empowerment to do great things together. I am the son of two wonderful parents and I have three sisters and 11 nieces and nephews. The center of my life is my beautiful wife, Stacey and my amazing 12-year-old son, Jackson.

Q: How do you define leadership development?
A: Leadership development is the process by which leaders become aware of their influence, their strengths, and their capacity to make themselves better. Leadership development includes knowledge of people, personalities, and learning—as well as strategy and tactics.

Q: What is innovation?
A: Innovation is a sense of restlessness with what is and a willingness to seek. It must be creative and unconstrained in conception, while being intentional and purposeful in implementation. Innovation truly is moonshot thinking. It is not merely making better what currently exists, but rather imaging new ways of thinking about and engaging in the world.

Q: What 10 adjectives would you use to describe yourself as a leader?
A: Innovative. Collaborative. Purpose-driven. Servant leader. Trusting. Dynamic. Compassionate. Developer of others. Human resource oriented. Debate-maker.

Q: If you were playing Two Truths and a Lie, what is one of the truths you would tell that would be most surprising or unlikely?
A: One truth I would tell that is unlikely is that I was on the Men’s 8 rowing team at Homerton College in Cambridge, England and raced competitively for the college.

Q: What are you most looking forward to about joining the GLISI team?
A: The ability to work with dedicated leaders and learners who want to make an impact on leaders across the state of Georgia. GLISI is uniquely positioned as a respected institution to help develop thoughtful, innovative, and results-oriented leaders who will focus on ensuring that all kids in Georgia are given the chance to have amazing, joyful learning experiences that prepare them for life.

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