At a special public meeting on August 15, the Westfield Board of Education unanimously approved the appointment of Keith Brunson as Assistant Principal of Roosevelt Intermediate School (RIS). Brunson currently serves as Dean of Students in the Piscataway Township School District and will begin his new position in Westfield on October 15, or earlier if released by the Piscataway school district. He will succeed Brian Gechtman who began his new position as RIS principal on August 1.
“To have an opportunity to serve as a role model in a school like Roosevelt excites me because it gives me an opportunity to have an impact not just on one grade level, but on an entire school,” says Brunson. “I am looking forward to working with a staff that focuses on achievement and that believes all students can succeed.”
Brunson brings to the position twenty years of educational experience. As Dean of Students for three years in Piscataway, he collaborated with counselors and teachers to assess student needs, developed classroom management programs, worked with parents to create positive outcomes for student-specific issues, and established specialized learning and organizational plans to aid student growth. Prior to his educational leadership role, Brunson taught social studies for 17 years at Piscataway High School. He also developed and led a student-focused mentoring, tutoring and leadership program and was head coach of the girls cross country and track and field teams.
“Mr. Brunson’s qualifications and experience are an excellent match with the core values of the Roosevelt School community,” says Gechtman. “During the interview process, Mr. Brunson impressed the committee with his passion for character education. As reflected in his answers to the committee, he always put the student’s safety and well-being first.”
Earning a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Fairleigh Dickinson University, Brunson also holds a master’s degree in Social Studies/Secondary Education from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in History with a minor in Sociology from Morris Brown College.
Brunson cites the late Westfield High School principal Dr. Derrick Nelson as a primary reason he was attracted to the Westfield Public School District. “I was fortunate to meet him in 2018 and although I only spoke with him on three occasions, the glowing things he said to me about working in the Westfield school district stayed with me,” says Brunson, who adds that Dr. Nelson spoke not just about WHS but about the importance of the shared vision of the entire district.
“For me, the time has come to grow and change. I am looking forward to hitting the ground running in Westfield. I am excited about building new relationships and connecting with students, parents, and staff,” Brunson adds. “I feel truly honored to be an educator and I feel extremely fortunate to have been given the opportunity to continue my career as an educator in the Westfield Public Schools system.”