Austin ISD makes it official, hiring Stephanie Elizalde as next superintendent

Future Austin ISD Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde spoke to trustees at a meeting Aug. 11. (Courtesy Austin ISD)
Future Austin ISD Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde spoke to trustees at a meeting Aug. 11. (Courtesy Austin ISD)

Future Austin ISD Superintendent Stephanie Elizalde spoke to trustees at a meeting Aug. 11. (Courtesy Austin ISD)

Stephanie Elizalde will officially take over as Austin ISD’s superintendent later this month.

The Austin ISD board of trustees approved Elizalde’s hiring Aug. 11, putting a cap on an almost six-month process to find the district’s next leader. Elizalde was named the lone finalist for the position in July.

"I just wanted to say thank you so very much," Elizalde said after the hiring. "I truly am just honored, humbled, super excited, nervous like the first day of school. I don't take this lightly. I know there are big shoes to fill, and there are huge expectations and I wouldn't want to work for a board who didn't expect excellence, so thank you so very much to all of you."

Prior to the hire, Elizalde was serving as Dallas ISD’s chief of school leadership, a role she had held since 2015. Overall, she brings 28 years of education leadership experience, with previous roles in San Antonio ISD and Southwest ISD as well.

Elizalde will take over for outgoing Superintendent Paul Cruz, who has served in that capacity since 2015 and is leaving the district to work at the University of Texas.


"We're so excited to have Elizalde on, and I also want to say thank you and goodbye to Dr. Cruz," said trustee Arati Singh. "I'm glad you won't be too far away, but we're so thrilled to have Dr. Elizalde's leadership and just, I think we're all just very excited."