La Feria News

La Feria ISD Welcomes New Superintendent

Superintendent Cathy Lee Hernandez First Hispanic Female to Lead LFISD

Newly elected Superintendent Cathy Lee Hernandez poses with members of the La Feria School Board at the latest School Board Meeting.

by Victor Moreno/LFN

The La Feria ISD Board of Trustees held a special meeting on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 to consider and approve the contract for the hiring of new Superintendent Cathy Lee Hernandez.

After a brief closed meeting the Board returned to take unanimous action on hiring Hernandez. Each Board member as well as newly hired Hernandez then thanked interim Superintendent Dr. Miriam Guerra for her service to LFISD.

Hernandez comes to LFISD with an impressive background rooted in the local area.

Cathy Lee Hernandez was born to Alfonso and Lidia Jimenez on April 16, 1965 in Houston, Texas. Her mother decided to name her after the nurse who took care of them which explains why she was the only one in the family to not receive a traditional Hispanic name.

Her early years were not easy by any means. The family moved around and lived in Houston, Santa Rosa, Harlingen, and La Feria. Her upbringing was very rough: little money, rough family environment, and taking care of herself. Instead of giving up, she was determined to get out of her situation and pursue her dreams. She started by graduating from Santa Rosa High School.

Then, she continued onto higher education, attending Pan American University. Even though she married and started a family, she never stopped attending school. With her husband, they raised four successful children, Alfonso, Melissa, Adriana, and Elias. Also, working together with her husband, she received a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas Pan American in 1990. This led to a successful teaching career with the Santa Rosa and La Feria school districts.

Determined to reach more students, she decided to pursue her Master’s in Education which she received in 1999. This led to her career in school administration as assistant principal, principal, and curriculum director at Progreso, Harlingen, Lyford, and La Feria school districts. Furthermore, she decided to reach for an even higher goal, becoming a superintendent. She worked and received her superintendent’s certificate from the University of Texas at Tyler.

She quickly found out that becoming a superintendent is quite difficult for candidates without experience, but she didn’t give up. She also learned that luck is sometimes what one needs to get a break. San Antonio Judson recognized her amazing talents and within a week offered her the position of Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction.

She was now one step closer to her main goal. As luck would have it, the La Feria superintendent’s position became open, so she decided to throw her name in the hat to see if she could come home and lead La Feria ISD. It was always her dream to head a Valley school as superintendent. She will now get to do that and do so as the first Hispanic woman to lead La Feria ISD. As for her education, she continues to reach for higher goals. In August, she started her pursuit of a PhD in School Administration through Walden University, continuing her quest to be the best.

“We have a great vision here for La Feria, I’m a teacher first and an instructional leader… everything that I’ve learned and with this amazing team, all of us together can make that vision a reality, so be ready” stated Hernandez.

The room erupted in applause and afterwards board members and Hernandez took a little time for photos and conversation.

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