Catawba County Schools Superintendent Selected as 2022 NCSSA Leadership Award Winner Dr. Brad Sneeden


The North Carolina School Superintendents Association (NCSSA) has announced the selection of Dr. Matt Stover, Superintendent of Catawba County Schools, as the recipient of the Dr. Brad Sneeden Leadership Award. The award honors and recognizes a superintendent who has demonstrated a strong commitment to lifelong learning, unwavering integrity in leadership, and transforming vision into action.

This annual award is presented to graduates of the North Carolina Association of School Superintendents’ Next Generation Superintendent Development Program (NGSDP), a program designed to empower and empower transformational education leaders in North Carolina’s public schools. Dr. Stover was selected by past recipients of the Brad Sneeden Leadership Award.

The award is named in honor of Dr. Brad Sneeden, who served as Carteret County Schools Superintendent at the time of his death in October 2008 at the age of 56. Among the innovative efforts he brought to the area was the establishment of the Academy of Marine Science, later renamed in his memorial, which provides students with hands-on marine science.

Previously, Dr. Sneeden served as Associate Vice President for Leadership Development and Director of the Executive Principals Program, Deputy State Superintendent of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education, Adjunct Professor of the Department of Education Guidance and Director of the Office of School Services at East Carolina University, and director of Craven County Schools. Dr. Sneeden has driven innovation and vision in preparing administrators for visionary leadership, never abandoning ethics of the highest order.

“I am honored to receive this award,” said Dr. Matt Stover. “The superintendents who have received this award before me are outstanding leaders and role models for all superintendents. I am grateful to NCSSA, Mr. Jack Hoke and all my NC colleagues for their support and service. I am also very grateful to my team at Catawba County Schools, the Department of Education and my family. The motto “being around great people only makes me better” is true in these groups! As a superintendent, your own family is often influenced, sometimes positively, sometimes negatively, given the responsibilities of the job, so I want to give special thanks to Melia (my wife), Will and Josh (my two boys, 16 and 15) for their love and support throughout my career!”

“The Catawba County Board of Education congratulates Dr. Matt Stover on receiving the 2022 NCSSA Dr. Brad Sneeden Leadership Award. Dr. Stover has demonstrated that he is a lifelong learner and deserves this award. Through his commitment to lifelong learning and educational innovation, Dr. Stover has helped Catawba County Schools become THE place to live and work.” Leslie H. Barnett, Catawba County Board of Education Chairman

The following criteria were taken into account when choosing the winner:

● Demonstrates vision and ability to translate vision into concrete goals. The recipient must be an individual whose leadership has resulted in the development and/or implementation of innovative programs and projects for the benefit of students.

● Demonstrates a strong commitment to lifelong learning, focusing on the continuous improvement of their leadership skills

● Demonstrate evidence of establishing and achieving high standards of ethical behavior within their organization.

“Dr. Stover exemplifies the traits that have guided Dr. Brad Sneeden’s career in education. He has demonstrated a vision for Catawba County Schools as an educational innovator and a strong commitment to continuous improvement and the highest standards of ethical conduct. He is a very deserving recipient of this award,” said Jack Hoke, NCSSA Executive Director.


EdNC staff reporting relies on staff, interns and reviewers.

Catawba County Schools Superintendent Selected as 2022 NCSSA Leadership Award Winner Dr. Brad Sneeden

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