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Oregon Chief Education Officer To Retire

Oregon's top education official is stepping down.

Oregon's top education official is stepping down. Chief Education Officer Nancy Golden took over in 2013 after Rudy Crew, who was the first person to serve in the position.

Crew left after a tumultuous year. Gov. John Kitzhaber called on Nancy Golden to take over as a consensus builder though she was headed into retirement after completing 10 years as the Springfield superintendent.

In a statement, Golden called the chief job one of the greatest honors of her career, but she said she promised her family she'd keep the job short term.

Gov. Kate Brown's announcement highlights Golden's focus on closing achievement gaps, and connecting the various parts of Oregon's education system. Both Brown and Golden spoke of a foundation of improvement now in place.

Lindsey Capps will serve as the new acting chief. He joined the governor's office back in March. Capps had been the director of a think tank at the statewide teachers' union. The governor's office didn't outline any plans for a permanent replacement.

The chief education officer presides over an agency in transition. The Oregon Education Investment Board formally hired and supervised Crew and Golden with Kitzhaber as board chair. But after Kitzhaber resigned earlier this year, Brown took over and supported legislative efforts to disband the board. The Legislature phased out the OEIB, this year, though its policy initiatives and staff generally remain in place.

<p>Nancy Golden watches two Earl Boyles Elementary School preschoolers.</p>
Michael Clapp /
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Nancy Golden watches two Earl Boyles Elementary School preschoolers.

Copyright 2015 Oregon Public Broadcasting

Rob Manning is a news editor at Oregon Public Broadcasting, with oversight of reporters covering education, healthcare and business. Rob became an editor in 2019, following about 15 years covering schools and universities in Oregon and southwest Washington as OPB’s education reporter.