Flagstaff governing board member resigns to take position at LAUNCH Flagstaff
Sections    Tuesday September 22nd, 2020
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Governing board member resigns to take position at LAUNCH Flagstaff

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  • Karin Eberhard/Flagstaff Unified School District and Steve Peru/ United Way of Northern Arizona


Flagstaff Unified School District Governing Board Member, Paul Kulpinski resigned his board seat to become the first Partnership Director of LAUNCH Flagstaff.

LAUNCH Flagstaff  is a community-wide initiative to provide all children with a “cradle-to-career” world-class education.

Along with Kulpinski’s letter of resignation, he also filed a voluntary statement of withdraw as a candidate for re-election in the November 8th General Election.

Governing board member resigns to take position at LAUNCH Flagstaff Paul-Kulpinski

Paul Kulpinski
Photo courtesy Flagstaff Unified School District

“While FUSD serves the vast majority of students in our community, LAUNCH Flagstaff is a community-wide initiative where every educational organization has a seat at the table,” said Kulpinski.  “It’s important that I resign my seat on the FUSD Board in order to ensure a high level of impartiality with all of our educational partners.”

His resignation will become effective October 31, 2016.

Kulpinski was first elected in March, 2002 and has consistently served on the Governing Board through some difficult times for the district, including school closures and boundary realignments in 2010.

Through his service to the district, Kulpinski has built relationships with key stakeholders in the community and across the state which has helped elevate the influence FUSD has on state-wide issues related to K-12 education.

“I have great fondness and gratitude for all of the board members I have served with over the past twelve years and am proud of the accomplishments we achieved for the benefit of all students in the district,” Kulpinski said.  “I have the highest admiration for the professionals in FUSD who every day are making a difference in the lives of our children.”

FUSD Superintendent of Schools Dave Dirksen, who has worked alongside Kulpinski for nine years, states that for him this is a bittersweet moment. 

“As a twelve-year member of the FUSD Governing Board, Paul has been the steady rock.  He is a courageous leader who has been charged with many difficult decisions, but in every instance his decisions were made in the best interests of teaching and learning,” Dirksen said.

“Paul has always served as a champion of children and families and he will continue to do so in his new role as Partnership Director of LAUNCH Flagstaff,” Dirksen said. “While Paul will be greatly missed on the FUSD Governing Board, he will now have a far greater reach in our community in support of a world class education for all.”

Steve Peru, President & CEO of the United Way of Northern Arizona, had this to say about Kulpinski.

“Paul brings extensive knowledge of the opportunities and challenges facing our education system from his many years on the school board and as a parent,” Peru said. “His knowledge goes beyond the Flagstaff area to include awareness and involvement with statewide education issues. LAUNCH Flagstaff will benefit greatly from Paul’s knowledge and extensive network.”

LAUNCH Flagstaff’s goals include increasing:

•    The number of children entering kindergarten ready for school.
•    The number of students reading at grade level at the end of third grade.
•    The number of 8th grade students performing at grade level in math.
•    The number of students graduating from high school within four years.
•    The number of students entering college or technical training.

Kulpinski created and is the owner of Spawning Fish, LLC, a multi-media production company that produces film, video and audio content that advances issues related to public K-12 education, especially related to funding, political action, advocacy and the promotion of outstanding educators. He also
co-founded Mountain Waves Healing Arts, Inc., a multi-discipline collaborative wellness center of 10 health care providers.

“I feel deeply honored and excited about the opportunity to expand my service to the Flagstaff community through the role of Partnership Director,” Kulpinski said. “I have great confidence that in harnessing the collective impact of every community member, we can create a community-wide culture that supports a world-class education for every child, in every school.”

Kulpinski added that he is looking forward to continuing his work with FUSD while also deepening his relationships with the charter and private schools in the community.