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Bob Nelson and Misty Her Still Silent on FUSD Superintendent Search
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By David Taub, Senior Reporter
Published 3 weeks ago on
April 2, 2024

Bob Nelson, right, is retiring as Fresno Unified superintendent. Neither he nor his deputy, Misty Her, left, is sharing their opinion on whether the district should expand its search beyond district employees . (GV Wire Composite)

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As community leaders gathered outside Fresno Unified headquarters and called for an expanded superintendent search, Deputy Superintendent Misty Her remained quiet.

GV Wire caught up with her momentarily Tuesday morning as she attended a Fresno Unified superintendent’s cabinet meeting. Asked about the news conference happening outside, Her had no comment, as the door shut to start the meeting.

“We’re going into a closed meeting. Thank you. Have a great day,” Her said.

A request to speak with Her made to the district’s communications department also fell on deaf ears.

Superintendent Bob Nelson plans to step down on July 31 for a job at Fresno State.

Nelson did not respond to messages left by GV Wire.

GV Wire’s Nancy Price reports that Her is the favorite among the internal candidates to become Nelson’s successor.

What Will Board Decide?

As Her met with the cabinet, Fresno Unified Board of Education President Susan Wittrup held a news conference, demanding that the search for Nelson’s successor be open to both internal and outside candidates.

Wittrup said that at a recent closed-session meeting of the board direction was given by a majority of trustees to interview inside candidates only.

Several other elected and community leaders also called for a broader search.

David Rivas, senior field representative for the local Carpenters Union, says many of his members send kids to Fresno Unified.

“We want to see the best for our students. And so (not) having a national search and closing that door, it just breaks the trust. It breaks the trust of the community, the residents, our members. Come on guys, we got to do better,” Rivas said.

Add SCCCD Trustee Nasreen Johnson to those calling for a broader search. She agrees that the next superintendent should have knowledge of the district and area’s culture.

“I don’t think that that necessarily should limit the search. I think that we should always look for the best, possible person to fill the job. And I think it’s important for, us not to exclude,” Johnson said.

Things may be changing. Tuesday morning, Trustee Claudia Cazares posted on Facebook that she now favors a nationwide search.

The Fresno Unified School Board will hold a special closed-session meeting on Wednesday at 5 p.m.. The agenda states the board will interview superintendent candidates. None of them is identified by name on the agenda.

Dyer Minding His Own Business

Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer refused to jump into the fray, when asked about the search.

“I don’t want them questioning who I appoint. I’m not going to question who they appoint,” Dyer said. “We have two council members that are doing that and community leaders, and I’ll leave it to them.”

Dyer referred to councilmembers Garry Bredefeld and Miguel Arias, who also attended the Tuesday newser.

Clarification: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that the board direction was to hire an internal candidate only.

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David Taub,
Senior Reporter
Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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