Ames school district begins search for new superintendent following Julious Lawson's resignation

Ames Community School District superintendent Julious Lawson in his office on 24th Street, Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, in Ames, Iowa.
Ames Community School District superintendent Julious Lawson in his office on 24th Street, Friday, Aug. 12, 2022, in Ames, Iowa.

Ames Community School District Superintendent Julious Lawson announced his resignation Sunday afternoon in an email to district parents.

The school also published a release on the district’s website.

Ames School Board President Kelly Winfrey authored the announcement and indicated Lawson had submitted his resignation to school board leadership on Jan. 25.

Lawson’s last day with the Ames school district will be June 30, ending a two-year run. He became Ames' superintendent in January 2022 and officially began his duties July 1, 2022.

“Dr. Lawson has been an invaluable leader for our District, and his departure is bittersweet,” Winfrey wrote. “We are sad to lose Dr. Lawson, but we are thankful for the great work he has done. He is leaving the District better than he found it.”

Lawson took a position with the Zion schools district in eastern Illinois, citing that it was a family decision.

“In his own words, Dr. Lawson shared, ‘Serving this community has been an incredibly rewarding experience and a highlight of my career,’” Winfrey wrote in the announcement. “Unfortunately, unforeseen family matters necessitate his full attention and presence, compelling him to step away from his role as superintendent to reunite with his family.”

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Lawson arrived in Ames via Chicago's Network 11

Lawson was an administrator at the third-largest school district in the United States before coming to Ames, where he served as chief of schools for Chicago’s Network 11. He oversaw 27 elementary schools on the city’s south side, with about 9,000 students and more than 900 teachers and staff.

Lawson will take over as superintendent of the Zion Elementary School District 6, according to the Zion district website. Lawson was named to the position Jan. 22 and will officially begin work July 1.

Zion, Illinois, is located north of Chicago, along Lake Michigan, just south of the Wisconsin border.

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Lawson did not immediately respond to the Ames Tribune's request for comment.

“Dr. Lawson assures us that he will diligently work during the transition period to ensure a smooth handover of responsibilities. His commitment to our District and the well-being of our students has been unwavering,” Winfrey wrote.

The Ames school board plans to begin its search for a new superintendent at next week's meeting.

“The board is moving swiftly to find a suitable replacement, and we will discuss the details of the search at the upcoming board meeting on February 5,” Winfrey wrote.

Ronna Faaborg is a reporter for the Ames Tribune. Reach her at

This article originally appeared on Ames Tribune: Ames superintendent Julious Lawson announces resignation