Clayton Wilcox (Photo: Courtesy of CMS)

Clayton Wilcox, a veteran educator who currently leads a small school district in suburban Maryland, has been selected as the next superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg School.

Wilcox is superintendent of Washington County Public Schools in Hagerstown, Md., a district of 22,000 students. At CMS, he will be responsible for guiding the nation’s 18th largest school district, with more than 147,000 students, a work force that tops 18,000 and a $1.4 billion annual operating budget, according to the Charlotte Observer.

Among his immediate challenges at CMS: launching a new diversity-driven magnet lottery, gearing up for a potentially contentious review of neighborhood school boundaries and preparing for a 2017 school bond campaign.

Wilcox’s first day with CMS will be July 1, 2017.

He previously served as superintendent in Pinellas County, Fla., and East Baton Rouge, La.

In announcing the selection of Wilcox, school boar Chair Mary McCray said, “We set out to not only find the best superintendent, but the best superintendent for this community. Based on the input we received from this community, and our interviews with Dr. Wilcox, I am confident that we got both.”

In a letter to the community, Wilcox said he was drawn to Charlotte for a number of reasons.

“…first because your core beliefs are my core beliefs – that you and your school board embrace a compelling vision that all students must receive the best education available anywhere,” he said in a statement released by the district.

The school board will introduce Wilcox to the community in the coming week, and he will be working with outgoing Superintendent Ann Clark “to ensure a smooth transition,” the board said.


Founder and publisher of Qcitymetro, Glenn has worked at newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, Wall Street Journal and The Charlotte Observer.