Deana McNamee comes to Maricopa High School from Winslow. (submitted photo)

Two new principals have been named in Maricopa Unified School District.

Deana McNamee of Winslow will take over Maricopa High School for the coming year, replacing Brian Winter. Elizabeth Allison, currently a teacher on special assignment for MUSD, will replace Randy Lazar at Pima Butte Elementary. Lazar resigned in April after seven years.

“I was drawn to MUSD by the small town feel of the community and the diverse population it serves,” McNamee said.

McNamee is a member of Navajo Nation and has held several positions at Winslow Unified School District, including assistant principal at the high school. She said it was important for her to relocate to a community that “that not only celebrates diversity but also promotes inclusiveness.”

She has been a high school art teacher and academic counselor, among other positions. The Winslow district in Navajo County has an enrollment of about 2,000. Enrollment at Winslow High School is about 650. MHS enrollment is around 2,200. Both high schools are carrying a C rating.

MUSD Superintendent Tracey Lopeman said McNamee’s background was important to her has well.

“I am excited to bring someone of Ms. McNamee’s background and experience in school improvement to our District,” Lopeman said. “Her track record demonstrates a commitment to student success and desire to develop systems and processes to support diversity. I am confident that she will respect the traditions and history that make MHS a wonderful place to work and learn while collaborating with the staff and families along the way to greater success.”

Allison will be taking the helm of MUSD’s top-rated school. It has an A rating from the state and an A+ designation by the Arizona Educational Foundation. Pima Butte has an enrollment of about 650.

“I am honored and excited for the opportunity to serve as principal of a school with a long history of academic excellence and strong community relations,” she said. “I look forward to working with the staff and community on identifying new opportunities to build upon the strengths of Pima Butte Elementary.”

Before becoming a TOSA for Pima Butte and Santa Rosa elementary schools in 2018, she was an assistant principal at Toltec School District in Eloy.

“Ms. Allison is an outstanding educator who has the skills, experience, and historical knowledge to be an extremely effective school leader, and I am excited for the Pima Butte community,” Lopeman said.


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