I first met Susan Salcido, our County Superintendent of Schools, while working for Partners in Education, a nonprofit under the umbrella of the Santa Barbara County Education Office. I was struck by her energy and her commitment to supporting high-quality education in our schools. I often thought, “That’s the kind of teacher I wish I’d had in every grade!” — she took the time to clearly introduce subjects, made space for people to voice opinions and ask questions, and shared her contagious enthusiasm. Even as an administrator, she retains the energy she brought to the high school English classroom and athletics.
In 2018, Susan was elected to lead the County Education Office, which supports 20 school districts, 10 charter schools, and over 70,000 children, educators, families, and countywide partnerships. She’s advocated for vital programs throughout her career. She’s spent weeknights and weekends promoting project-based learning opportunities, investing in workforce training to connect classroom education to students’ career goals, and improving quality of life for youth and our broader community.
Susan has also continued her personal education, through the Leading From Within Katherine Harvey Fellows program and by earning her doctorate from USC’s School of Education, where she focused on organizational change, leadership, and student equity. Susan is a product of our local schools (Santa Maria for K-12 and UCSB for B.A. and M.A.), who chose to stay and dedicate her career to changing the trajectory for other local students. I’m looking forward to voting for her on June 7!