Sequatchie Schools Director to retire after 20 years on the job - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Sequatchie Schools Director to retire after 20 years on the job

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Johnny Cordell Johnny Cordell

 One of Tennessee's longest running school superintendents is calling it a career at the end of June.  Johnny Cordell will retire after twenty years on the job as Sequatchie County's Director of Schools.

Cordell has spent his entire career in the county, spending only four years as a classroom history teacher before being recruited into administration. From there, he was assistant principal at the county's junior high school, then serving as Federal Projects Director, Attendance Director, Transportation Director, and Assistant Superintendent.  In 1995, he was appointed Superintendent by the County Commission.  As the methods of choosing a school district leader changed (as well as the title to Director of Schools), he was elected by the public in 1996, and then selected by the School Board in 2000.  No successor has been named.

Cordell has presided over a period of growth in Sequatchie County, and the building of several new facilities.  The district earned an "exemplary" designation in 2012 from the Tennessee Department of Education.  

He said he plans to help his successor make a smooth transition, "because it's a very important job."  After the new person is in place, he says he hopes to travel frequently during his retirement, with several destinations already lined up,"  He said he hopes to visit fellow Marines he served with during his time as a Naval Avaiator in the Vietnam war.  He earned the rank of Captain, and later served with the Tennessee National Guard during the Persian Gulf war as a combat engineer.

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