HPS announces Interim Principal for Hickory High

HPS announces Interim Principal for Hickory High
Posted on 01/24/2020
robert brown

HPS announces Interim Principal

for Hickory High


HICKORYEffective Thursday, January 23, 2020, Robert W. Brown, Jr., started his new leadership role as the Interim Principal for Hickory High School.  With full support of Hickory Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Robbie Adell, and the HPS Board of Education, Brown is serving in the leadership role during the absence of Ms. Rebecca Tuttle, HHS principal, who is currently on extended leave of absence.

Dr. Adell addressed the faculty of Hickory High on Thursday afternoon and introduced Mr. Brown to the HHS team.  In addition, a telephone message and email was distributed to all HHS families on Thursday evening with the administrative updates.

The following excerpts were included in Superintendent Adell’s message to the Hickory High School Family:

“Since the simultaneous start of 2020 and a new school semester, the staff and students of Hickory High continue to move forward with their daily engagement of excellence in academics, arts, and athletics. We are very proud of their dedicated participation.

Hickory High administrators, Ms. Amy Baker and Mr. Matt Hollifield, who serve as assistant principals, are to be commended for their excellent leadership during the absence of Ms. Rebecca Tuttle, HHS principal.  Ms. Tuttle remains on extended administrative leave.  Barring unforeseen circumstances, it is our intent to reinstate Ms. Tuttle to an administrative role at a date yet to be determined.

In the meantime, Hickory Public Schools welcomes Mr. Robert Brown, a school administrator from Shelby, NC, as the Interim Principal for Hickory High School, effective immediately.  Mr. Brown brings professional knowledge and compelling experience in all aspects of school leadership. Thank you for your “Tornado Welcome” to Mr. Brown—as he steps into his new role at Hickory High.

We proudly continue to serve our students and families. We encourage everyone to contribute to a positive culture and a professional community that values safety, growth, and kindness.”

Following several meetings on Brown’s first day with Hickory High, he attended the evening home (winning) basketball games where he had the chance to meet students, staff, coaches, volunteers, and families.

“I am thrilled to be here at Hickory High and I look forward to building upon the strengths in place as developed by Ms. Tuttle and the team. We are moving forward with a strong focus on rigor and developing healthy relationships. I am thankful for the opportunity to work with the amazing staff and students of Hickory High,” said Brown.

“We are in full support of Dr. Adell’s selection of Mr. Robert Brown as the Interim Principal for Hickory High School,” said Dr. Bryan Graham, chairman of the HPS Board of Education. “On behalf of the Board of Education, we wish the best for Ms. Tuttle during her leave; and we are pleased that Mr. Brown has opted to join Hickory High in this interim administrative role. His wealth of experience and broad knowledge of the demands in leading a high school are a great fit during this time of need. We welcome Mr. Brown to Hickory Public Schools!” said Graham.

A native of Shelby, NC, Brown earned two Master of Arts degrees—one in history from the University of Nebraska at Kearney and the other in school administration from Gardner-Webb University. His undergraduate degree was earned in history from UNC-Charlotte.

Since 1995, Brown has been actively involved in education. He served as the Headmaster of Pinnacle Classical Academy in Shelby, Assistant Principal at Chase Middle School in Forest City, and Assistant Principal at Crest High School in Boiling Springs.

In addition to classroom teaching experience for the secondary level, Brown currently serves as an Adjunct Instructor for Cleveland Community College and he taught at Gardner-Webb University.

Brown previously served as the Professional Development Coordinator for the American Institute for History Education in New Jersey and he is a National Board Certified teacher in Social Studies/History.

Brown also has a passion for athletics—having served as the assistant coach for football at Crest High, as well as the assistant and head coach for track and field at Crest High. Brown was active in athletics during his college years with “shot put and discus.”

The author of several publications based on history, including “Kings Mountain and Cowpens Our Victory Was Complete” and “Classroom Historians: Building Student Understanding of the Past,” Brown has contributed to multiple publications and authored “The Streets of Shelby” for a hometown print.

Brown is the recipient of more than $3Million in grants awarded to history programs in Cleveland County for his projects covering the pedagogical skills of secondary social studies and improving elementary teacher history content knowledge.

Honors and awards for Robert Brown include the NC School Library and Media Association Administrator of the Year, SC Council for Social Studies/Friend of Social Studies, Time-Warner Cable Star Teacher (twice), NC D.A.R. American History Teacher of the Year, Cleveland County Walmart Teacher of the Year, and Flint Hills Chapter D.A.R. American History Teacher of the Year.

Brown is a frequent guest speaker and presenter for workshops on history content, educational theory and research, and research-based methods. He audience groups have ranged from the US Department of Education Conference in New Orleans, LA to the National Defense University, JSOMA Program at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

Please join us in welcoming Mr. Robert Brown to Hickory High!


(photo/release by Beverly Snowden, HPS director of communications)

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