INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Eric Holcomb tapped Katie Jenner as the state’s first secretary of education Thursday.
The position is transitioning from an elected superintendent of public instruction post.
“This is an incredibly important time for education in Indiana. Dr. Katie Jenner has focused her entire career on investing in students, teachers and staff, and she will continue to build the relationships needed to move our state forward in constructive ways,” Holcomb said. “As Indiana’s secretary of education, Dr. Jenner’s certification, work at nearly every level of education and her remarkable depth of experience will lead our state into this exciting next chapter.”
Jenner currently is Holcomb’s senior education adviser. Her first position in K-12 public education was as a career and technical education teacher in Kentucky beginning in 2005. From 2009 to 2018, she worked for Madison Consolidated Schools in Indiana as a school administrator and district administrator. In 2018 she joined Ivy Tech Community College as vice president of K-12 Initiatives and Statewide Partnerships.
She currently makes more than $161,000 and her pay will move to $175,000.
Jennifer McCormick, who is finishing her elected term, makes about $103,000.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to further serve the people of Indiana,” Jenner said. “My priorities are to ensure high-quality education for all students and families, and to provide solution-focused support for our teachers and educational leaders. We have great opportunity ahead in Indiana, and I can’t wait to roll up my sleeves and work hand in hand with students, educators and stakeholder partners across the state.”
The Indiana State Teachers Association said it has worked with Jenner on several education issues.
“Her experience in K-12 education as a teacher and administrator is critical experience ISTA sought for Indiana’s first Secretary of Education,” the statement said. “We look forward to working with Dr. Jenner to bring leaders together to invest in public schools, support Hoosier educators and provide the highest quality public education for our students.”
Holcomb said she will focus on the following areas: supporting schools through and beyond the pandemic; providing all students personalized pathways to prepare them for lifelong success; championing the educator profession; and cultivating a future-ready education system.
Jenner earned her undergraduate degree from Transylvania University, her master’s degree in education from the University of Kentucky, an MBA from Indiana State University and her doctorate of education from the University of Kentucky.