Staff Reports

Dr. Robert Downs

January 30, 2019, BUFORD – The Board of Education of the City of Buford is pleased to announce that Dr. Robert Downs, Assistant Superintendent of Cobb County Schools, is the sole finalist to be appointed next Superintendent of Buford City Schools.  Dr. Downs was selected among 92 applicants spanning 15 states.  Prior to serving as an Assistant Superintendent in Cobb County, Dr. Downs served as principal at Pope High School for five years when it was recognized as one of the top high schools in the nation by Newsweek and US News and World Report and won two Georgia High School Athletics Director’s Cups.  Dr. Downs also held roles as principal at Lost Mountain Middle School, assistant principal at Wheeler and Sprayberry High Schools, as well as Technology Integration Specialist for the Cobb County School District.  Dr. Downs has a strong background in leadership development, strategic planning, and technology implementation. Dr. Downs prides himself on building positive relationships and communicating with a diverse population.

The search committee, comprised of nine individuals and chaired by former superintendent Beauty Baldwin, presented a short list of candidates to the Board of Education.  The Board conducted interviews with the top candidates before selecting Dr. Downs.

“Dr. Downs’ credentials and experience stood out among the highly qualified field of candidates.   We are confident that he will build strong ties with students, teachers, parents and the community.  It is an exciting time for Buford as we welcome a new Superintendent and prepare to open a state-of-the-art high school complex this fall to take Buford and its student body to the next level,” said Board Chair Phillip Beard.  “We appreciate the input we received from the community and would particularly like to thank the search committee under the leadership of Beauty Baldwin and Sue Morris.”

“I am very excited and honored to be named as the sole finalist for the position of Superintendent of Buford City Schools. This is a community with a strong tradition of excellence and I look forward to joining the family. I do want to thank the committee and Interim Superintendent Joy Davis for the many hours and expertise they brought to the extensive search process. I look forward to many years of service to this outstanding community.”

With roots in Chestnut Mountain, Georgia, Dr. Downs attended Johnson High School prior to obtaining various degrees at the University of Georgia, West Georgia, and Lincoln Memorial University.  He is married to Melissa and has two adult children.

Chris Ragsdale, Superintendent of Cobb County Schools, stated, “I am very excited for Bob and wish him much success.  He will be sorely missed in Cobb.”

Dr. Downs is anticipated to commence his duties on February 25, 2019.

The Board wishes to recognize and thank Interim Superintendent Joy Davis who served in the position since late August.  The Board notes that not only did Ms. Davis provide stability during the interim period but also launched several new initiatives including protocols to enhance communication and transparency and the District’s diversity and inclusion position and program.

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