Assistant superintendent retiring
Thirty-six years ago, Douglas County School District Superintendent Gene L. Scarselli recognized the name of a young college graduate on an application for a teaching position. George Mross had been a student of his a few years earlier, when Scarselli was a high school teacher in Reno.
That recognition helped lead to Mross’s first involvement with the Douglas County School District, as a 7th and 8th grade English teacher at Zephyr Cove in 1962. Now, George Mross, in the position of assistant superintendent in charge of personnel, has decided to retire.
“Thirty-six years is a long time,” Mross, 62, said. “I’m going to miss it. Then again, I like quiet time as well. I’m looking forward to that.”
Mross graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with a bachelor’s degree in education, with an emphasis in English. His first job was at Zephyr Cove, where he stayed until 1966 before teaching at George Whittell. In 1975, he was the vice principal there. He became the first principal at Kingsbury Middle School when it opened in 1976.
He’s been the assistant superintendent dealing with personnel for 19 years.
“I loved my time in the classroom. I spent some time coaching, and I enjoyed that,” Mross said. “I enjoyed being a principal and a vice principal. I enjoyed being assistant superintendent dealing with personnel. I can’t think of any other job you could have for 36 years and be exposed to the variety of experiences I’ve had the opportunity to be involved in.”
Mross worked under four superintendents during his tenure: Scarselli, George Graham, Greg Betts and Pendery Clark. He has praise for all of them. He also has nothing but praise for the Douglas County School District.
“I have always felt, from my first day right up until now, that we have the best school district in the state of Nevada – bar none,” he said.
Mross should know, too. Not only has he been a part of the school district for years, his current position has allowed him to become familiar with school districts in Nevada and the United States.
“I enjoyed it immensely. I’ve been able to communicate with other districts,” he said, “and from what I’ve seen, I doubt there’s any district doing it any better than we do. I’ve always been proud of our district. I’ve never had any doubts about that.”
During his lengthy career, Mross said he’s seen a lot of changes in the county and the school district. However, the biggest change is obvious.
“Growth, of course, is the biggest change,” Mross said.
When Mross started in the school district, there were fewer than 100 teachers. Now, the district has 455 teachers.
About five years ago, the school district implemented a strategic plan to ensure continued quality in Douglas County education. The plan – “a blueprint for the district” – is reviewed annually by the school board and residents. Because of the plan, Mross is confident the county’s education will remain of the highest caliber.
“If that strategic plan continues to be a living, working document,” Mross said, “I think (the school district) will continue to succeed as it has.”
Mross’s retirement becomes effective Aug. 1, and he doesn’t have any immediate plans. He said he will miss working for the school district, but he is looking forward to retirement.
“I just want to see if there are other things I care to do,” Mross said. “If there aren’t, there are other avenues of things I like doing. I enjoy writing. I’ve taken up gardening. I enjoy walking along a beach. I enjoy pausing and trying to ponder the beauty of a rose.
“I think it’s time I just have time – to do anything or nothing.”