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Association selects Nielsen as school superintendent of the year

Nebo School District Superintendent, Rick Nielsen, was named Utah School Superintendent of the Year for 2020 by the Utah School Superintendent Association.

He is in his 30th year in education and is honored to serve Nebo District’s 34,000 students in 46 schools and programs as superintendent since 2010. Prior to his appointment, Nielsen’s career included service as a sixth-grade teacher, elementary school principal, and district-level administrator.

Nielsen holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education and a Master of Education Degree in Educational Leadership from Brigham Young University. Nielsen serves on a number of boards, including Utah Valley University Board of Trustees, Co-Chair of the UVU/MTECH K-16 Alliance, and Chair of the BYU/Public School Partnership.

He is also the current president of the Utah State Superintendent Association. Nielsen is well known for his unwavering focus on student success, commitment to positive energy and kindness, optimistic attitude, strong work ethic and professionalism.

His colleagues say: “Mr. Nielsen is uncompromising in his quest for quality educational opportunities for all young people and sets a high standard of excellence for himself and for others. He is one of the best ‘idea’ men in the business, constantly creating ways to make education more rewarding and personal to the students and staff of Nebo District. Rick is respected by his colleagues and peers and has a way of inspiring everyone around him to become better. His ability to interact with people is unparalleled. He is a good listener with exceptional people skills, a good sense of humor, and a congenial personality. These great interpersonal skills, coupled with his intelligence and wisdom to make appropriate decisions when the stakes are high, make him one of the best problem solvers in the business.”

Nielsen is a proud Nebo District product, having graduated from Spanish Fork High School. He and his wife, Karen, reside in Spanish Fork today and are the parents of five children, with one daughter-in-law. In his leisure time, he enjoys reading a wide-variety of books, going to the theater, providing church service, and supporting student activities. (Submitted to Serve Daily by Lana Hiskey.)