By Shelby Stewart-Soldan
Brandon Schools — Harvey Swanson has a new principal. Jessica Hevel, a 2004 Brandon graduate, will be a familiar face to many students and parents.
“While in Brandon I taught mostly kindergarten, second grade for one year, and spent my last five years as a K-5 literacy coach,” said Hevel. “Most recently, I spent last year as principal of Weston Elementary in Kearsley.”
As a Brandon grad and a past teacher in the district, Hevel is excited to return to the community.
“I have so many fond memories of growing up as a student in Brandon,” she said. “I am proud of the experiences I had and the education I received. As a teacher, I felt supported, challenged, and always encouraged to grow in my career.”
Hevel received her bachelors in elementary education from Oakland University, her masters in reading from Marygrove College, and her administrator certificate from the Michigan Association of Secondary School Principals. She also has children in the Brandon School District.
“As a parent in Brandon, I feel that my children are receiving a great education while being surrounded by a community that is second to none,” said Hevel. “I’m committed to ensuring this same experience for the students, families, and staff members at Harvey Swanson. I am a proud member of this community and am grateful for the opportunity to return as principal in this district. I have no doubts that returning home to Brandon is truly where I am meant to be and I look forward to getting started and serving this community and district for many years to come.”
Hevel has a goal for the year of listening to students, families and staff to learn how best to serve the community and school.
“I’m looking forward to working with the school board, administrators, staff members, parents and the students to ensure that Harvey Swanson is a place that is safe, welcoming, fun and a place where all students are succeeding,” she said. “I’ve had the privilege of working for many administrators through the years, many of those at Harvey Swanson, and I’ve been able to watch, learn, and develop my own leadership style incorporating many of the traits I’ve learned from them. I’ve learned the importance of building relationships, being involved in the community, giving and receiving feedback, how to encourage and inspire those around me, and what true engagement and passion looks like in a leader.”
Hevel is rejoining the Harvey Swanson team following the retirement of Debbie Brauher, who is retiring on June 30.
Check back in with The Citizen next week to learn more about Brauher and her career at Brandon.
By Shelby Stewart-Soldan