Brentwood Magnet leader named Wake Principal of the Year

Posted October 11, 2012 7:49 p.m. EDT
Updated October 11, 2012 7:51 p.m. EDT

— The Wake County Public School System named the principal of Raleigh's Brentwood Magnet Elementary School of Engineering as the 2012 Principal of the Year Thursday evening.

Ken Branch received his award during a ceremony at Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh.

Branch is in his second year as principal at Brentwood, but has over three decades' experience as an educator. He was the first principal of Centennial Campus Magnet Middle School and has been a district leader for magnet and middle school academics, according to the school system.

"Dr. Branch is a dedicated educator who has a passion for seeing all students succeed," said Wake schools interim superintendent Stephen Gainey.

As Principal of the Year, Branch will receive a $1,000 prize and Brentwood will get $500. 

He said he is passionate about both students and teachers.

“I love the kids. We all love the kids, and that’s why we do this. Every day, they inspire me,” Branch said. “The teachers also keep me going. They are magicians. I know that what they do is the most important job in the world, and my job is to support them.”

Kevin Biles, of Pleasant Union Elementary School; Ericka Lucas, of East Wake School of Arts, Education and Global Studies; Brian Pittman, of Holly Ridge Middle School; and Paula Trantham, of Millbrook Magnet Elementary School, were the other award finalists. 

All finalists received a $500 cash prize and a cart full of office supplies.

Also on Thursday, the school system named Ruth Ann Freeman of Bugg Magnet Elementary School in Raleigh as the 2012 Assistant Principal of the Year.