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Dr. Tryggestad Named the 2017 Superintendent of the Year

Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016
 Dr. Curt Tryggestad
Eden Prairie Schools Superintendent, Dr. Curt Tryggestad has been named the 2017 Minnesota Superintendent of the Year by the Minnesota Association of School Administrators (MASA).
Dr. Tryggestad was selected for this honor by a panel of representatives from a variety of Minnesota education organizations. Superintendent of the Year nominees are evaluated on how each candidate demonstrates:
  • Leadership for learning—creativity in successfully meeting the needs of his or her school system.
  • Communication skills—strength in both personal and organizational communication.
  • Professionalism—constant improvement of administrative knowledge and skills, while providing professional development opportunities and motivation to others on the education team.
  • Community involvement—active participation in local community activities and understanding of regional, national, and international issues.
“During his time at Eden Prairie Schools, Dr. Tryggestad has become a pillar of leadership and professional excellence within his schools and the surrounding communities,” said MASA Executive Director Dr. Gary Amoroso. “Dr. Tryggestad is deserving of this award in every fashion, and I am excited to continue to watch him lead Eden Prairie Schools for many years to come. On behalf of MASA, I am extremely proud to have him represent our administrators as Minnesota’s 2017 Superintendent of the Year.”
Dr. Tryggestad has served as Superintendent of Eden Prairie Schools since 2012. Eden Prairie Schools has one of the most comprehensive digital programs in the country, providing individual devices to students from early childhood through high school and targeted, job-embedded professional development opportunities for their teaching staff. Eden Prairie has the largest array of student activities in the state, with more than 80 percent of their high school students involved in at least one after school activity. Eden Prairie students consistently score above the state ACT averages and are recognized as State AP Scholars at a rate far outpacing all other Minnesota high schools. Eden Prairie is located in close proximity to the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area providing a perfect balance of small town feel and big city amenities. The city of Eden Prairie has been recognized as a great place to work and raise a family for many years and is consistently ranked among Money Magazine’s “Best Places to Live” in America.
“Dr. Tryggestad exemplifies every day the key values of leadership, communication, professionalism, and community involvement that are the important components of a successful superintendent,” said Elaine Larabee, Chair of the Eden Prairie School Board. “Eden Prairie has a rich and diverse student culture that requires a variety of programming to serve a variety of needs. During his tenure with Eden Prairie Schools, Dr. Tryggestad has led a number of initiatives that have been respectful of that culture and will result in the long term success of all students and of the district itself.”
“When Dr. Tryggestad arrived at Eden Prairie, I was unsure anyone could lead this district back to unity – and what he has accomplished in this district is nothing short of amazing,” said Kelly Hopper, Eden Prairie Schools Parent and current PTO President at Central Middle School and President of the Eden Prairie Schools PTO Presidents Council. “Dr. Tryggestad has brought about a digital learning program in our schools that is second to none, he has gotten a very large referendum passed, he has healed years of divide and distrust in our district and he has brought Eden Prairie Schools back to the culture of excellence that we have all longed for. He overcame incredible hurdles to create a culture of trust, innovation and integrity.”
Dr. Tryggestad served on the Minnesota Online Learning Advisory Council and the Minnesota Technology Task Force, both appointments made by the Minnesota Commissioner of Education. Later he was named by MDE to be a participant in the Achieve Open Educational Resources (OER) Institute, established to help a group of states address issues on OER implementation, including the uses of measures of quality for evaluating OER to meet challenging College and Career Readiness/Common Core state standards. He continues to promote and share his expertise in the integration of technology into education both at the local level and statewide. At the state level, Dr. Tryggestad has served as chair of the governing board of Infinity Online Academy and in leadership positions for both MASA and the Minnesota Rural Education Association (MREA). He currently is the 2016-17 President-Elect for the MASA Board of Directors.
In 2010, he was awarded the Administrator of Excellence Award by the MASA, and was recognized by the Minnesota Rural Education Association (MREA) with an Exemplary Program Award for a bullying prevention program. Dr. Tryggestad received the MASA 2015 Richard Green Scholars Program Award for his doctoral research, “The Role of the Minnesota Superintendent as a Technology Leader: A Delphi Study.”
Dr. Tryggestad began his duties as superintendent of Eden Prairie Schools on July 1, 2012. Prior to working at Eden Prairie Schools, he was the Superintendent at Little Falls Community Schools, Superintendent at Esko Public Schools, and Secondary Principal at Pine City Public Schools. Dr. Tryggestad began his career in education as an instrumental music instructor.
Dr. Tryggestad earned a doctorate degree in Educational Leadership and a master’s degree in Music: Conducting and Literature from St. Cloud State University. He received a bachelor’s degree in music from Luther College, and a licensure in educational leadership from Winona State University.
"I am truly honored to receive this award,” said Dr. Tryggestad. “This recognition is a tribute to the hard work, dedication and outstanding accomplishments of our entire Eden Prairie Schools community.”
Dr. Tryggestad, as the Minnesota honoree, is a candidate among other state recipients for National Superintendent of the Year. The national award will be announced during the American Association of School Administrators (AASA) convention held on March 1-4, 2017 in New Orleans, LA.
For more information on the AASA Superintendent of the Year Program, please visit the
MASA is a professional organization of Minnesota’s school leaders, including superintendents, assistant superintendents, directors of special education, and other central office administrators, as well as state department administrators, college, and university professors, and other educators throughout Minnesota dedicated to educational leadership for students.