Vancouver school board member Mari Greves announced her retirement at the Dec. 9 school board meeting. Greves’ last board meeting as a director will be Jan. 13, 2015.

During her 20-year tenure, Greves helped steer the school district through unprecedented change. Since 1995, she has served with three superintendents, has overseen two strategic plans and has been involved with three major construction phases. She has seen classroom technology evolve from computer labs in the 1990s to one-to-one mobile technology in the 21st century and watched the district rise to national acclaim as a leader in digital innovation.

Greves’ leadership contributed to the board’s two-time recognition as Board of the Year in 2010 and 2011, and to its being named a Special Merit winner in 2013 after five consecutive years as a Board of Distinction. The Washington State School Directors’ Association conferred those honors.

An advocate for students, families and the community, Greves has been an influential supporter of early learning and family engagement, for which VPS also has earned national recognition. Full-day kindergarten is offered in all 21 elementary schools, and the district’s Jump Start kindergarten-readiness program earned a 2014 Magna Award from the National School Boards Association. For its work in family engagement across its network of 13 Family-Community Resource Centers, District Administration magazine named VPS a 2014 District of Distinction.

Greves’ service to the community includes extensive involvement on the Citizens’ Committee for Good Schools in support of school levy and bond campaigns. She serves as an ex-officio board member on the Foundation for Vancouver Public Schools, and also has served on boards for the Free Clinic of Southwest Washington and the YWCA Clark County. In 2007, Greves was named a YWCA Clark County Woman of Achievement.

Even prior to being elected to the board, Greves was a longtime advocate for education. Beginning in 1980, Greves volunteered tirelessly in the schools of her three children.

“Mari leaves a legacy of leadership that will carry forward. I’m confident that our students are better equipped to be successful in the 21st century today because of her leadership on the board,” said Superintendent Steven Webb.

Added Board President Mark Stoker, “Mari is a tireless champion for our students, families and employees. She has selflessly given her time to make this district worthy of pride, and those who have worked with her are fortunate. She is a role model.”

Said Greves, “It’s been a great privilege for me to serve on the board, and I’m enormously proud of all the work that’s done every day on behalf of our students. Every time I walk into a classroom, I experience the excellence that’s going on, and I’m reminded of our extraordinary staff’s dedication and professionalism.”

A celebration honoring Mari Greves for her years of service to Vancouver Public Schools will be planned for late January or early February. Details will be announced soon.