Tom Ryerson is at the helm at Geneseo High School

Geneseo Republic

The school year at Geneseo High School brings with it a new principal. Tom Ryerson has been named to the position, succeeding Travis Mackey, who retired as principal at the end of the 2021-2022 school year.

Although new to the position at GHS, Ryerson is not new to the Geneseo School District. He previously served as an assistant principal at Geneseo Middle School and as principal at both Southwest and Millikin Grade Schools.

Prior to becoming an administrator, he was a classroom teacher in Rock Island, Peoria and Carbon Cliff.

Before being named GHS principal, he was the Director of Instructional Programming for the Moline-Coal Valley School District for the last six years.

Geneseo School Superintendent Dr. Adam Brumbaugh commented about having Ryerson join the Geneseo School District and said, “Tom really stood out and he was unanimously selected as our top choice (for the position of GHS principal). Tom has a high level of familiarity with our district, and he understands the culture. He previously worked here as an administrator, and he gained valuable experience and perspective as an administrator in Moline. He is an excellent fit.”

tom Ryerson

“Many residents will be familiar with Tom as a Geneseo resident with three kids in the district and during his time here previously as an administrator,” Dr. Brumbaugh said.

"Mr. Ryerson has experience at the high school level developing programs for Career Pathways, the Diane Sweeney student-centered approach to instructional coaching, Grow Your Own teacher prep program and CNC machine course expansion, to name just a few,” he added. “He is an excellent administrator and I am excited to work with him and to see what he will do at GHS and for the District.”

Ryerson was born and raised in the Quad City area – in Hampton. After graduating from United Township High School in East Moline, he attended the University of Iowa where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Education.

He attended the University of Iowa while he was teaching in the evenings to earn his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration.

Ryerson and his wife, Anne, have lived in Geneseo for the last 22 years. The couple has three children, Nate Ryerson, 17, Nile Ryerson, 15, and Novak Ryerson, 11.

When asked what led him to a career in education, he listed three things, “The opportunity to see students grow both academically and socially; to inspire the next generation, other than parents/guardians, teachers and schools have arguably the biggest influence on a child’s life. No two days are alike; I enjoy the variety each day brings.”

The new GHS principal said he hopes to bring and help create a positive culture and climate for both staff and students at GHS…”A positive school climate can improve

students’ academic achievement, attendance, engagement and behavior as well as teacher satisfaction.”

He referred to College and Career Pathways and said, “I also hope to bring and provide students access to explore and engage in courses and real-life opportunities in career fields they have interest in. Every individual student has different interests and it is our job to help students learn and explore those career field areas.”

“I am very excited about the new GHS Vocational Center that will break ground this year,” he added. “I am looking forward to building partnerships with our local businesses to create a pipeline of high school graduates who are ready to be hired upon graduation.”

In his position as GHS principal, Ryerson commented that he is responsible to supervise, facilitate and manage all the daily operations and functions of GHS. “Most importantly, creating an environment where students feel safe, supported, engaged and accepted,” he added.