Mark Foust is the lone finalist and will be the next superintendent of Northwest ISD, as chosen during the board of trustees meeting Dec. 12.

He will fill the role held by David Hicks earlier this school year prior to his sudden death Sept. 9. Michael Griffin was appointed interim superintendent following the death of Hicks, who was in his first year working for the district.

The board had three rounds of interviews with candidates before picking Foust. His hire will become official after a state-required 21-day waiting period, and he is tentatively scheduled to start in January, according to the district.

“I am honored and excited to become part of the Northwest ISD community,” Foust said in a press release. “Serving as superintendent of schools in this district is truly a blessing, and I look forward to continuing the strong traditions of excellence here. I plan to work hand-in-hand with the board of trustees, staff and community to meet the needs of every student and ensure the highest quality of education for our nation’s most valuable resource, our children.”

Foust has held a similar position at Kerrville ISD the past six years. According to a press release, during his tenure, the district implemented new science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs, expanded career and technical education opportunities, and helped the district pass a $89 million bond in 2018.

Foust started his 27-year education career as an English teacher in Fort Bend ISD near Houston. He has also been an associate principal and principal at the high school level before moving into administration. He was an assistant superintendent and chief of schools and led educational services for all 74 schools in FBISD.

Foust earned his undergraduate degree from Texas A&M University, his master’s degree from the University of Houston-Victoria and doctorate from the University of Houston.

He takes over a district that has 14 cities and municipalities in a district that is 234 square miles. According to NISD, this is the fast-growing district in North Texas.

A community reception to meet the new district leader will take place in January with event details to come in the coming weeks, the district said.

“During our search, we received applications from dozens of highly qualified candidates and interviewed several well-regarded leaders, and Dr. Foust repeatedly impressed the board with his background and how it matched our community’s input,” NISD board President Anne Davis-Simpson said in a press release. “Throughout the search process, Dr. Foust’s actions and background emphasized our district’s first core belief that kids come first. He is a leader who understands the importance of developing every aspect of a student and respects the value a community brings to its schools.”