Marysville Joint Unified School District Superintendent Gary Cena announced his retirement at Tuesday’s Board of Trustees meeting.

“I just feel that this is the best decision for the MJUSD and for me and I want to give the board time to find the best new superintendent and help with the transition so that the superintendent, the staff, students and schools can be as successful as possible going into 2021-2022,” Cena said Wednesday.

Cena served as the Marysville High School principal from 2005 to 2017 before retiring and then was named as the superintendent of the district in 2019.

“Embedded throughout the MJUSD is a transcending heart and soul where dedicated staff members selflessly and tirelessly work together to serve every student, every day, in every way,” Cena said Wednesday. “I am truly inspired by their passion and so grateful their passion continues shining no matter the challenge, obstacle or circumstance. This is where hope for everyone resides.”

Randy Rasmussen, board president, said Wednesday that the board has three options to consider for finding the next superintendent: the board can appoint a new superintendent, do a local search for a new superintendent or conduct a statewide search.

Rasmussen said the board will meet to discuss the options and will move forward once they decide which option to pursue.

The hope, he said, is that they will have a new superintendent chosen by the start of July as Cena’s contract runs until the end of June.

“The board would like to thank Mr. Cena for his tireless dedication to the students, staff and families of Marysville Joint Unified School District,” Rasmussen said.

Angela Stegall, president of the Marysville Unified Teachers Association, said Cena “has done it all in the district” and that “his positivity is much to be applauded.”

“Gary has dedicated his adult life to Marysville High School and to Marysville Joint Unified and educating the youth of our community,” Stegall said Wednesday. “...We certainly wish him the very best in his retirement and we definitely hope he’ll be able to get some much-needed and well-deserved rest this summer.”

Cena’s retirement will be effective June 30.

“Thank you to MJUSD employees, students and families for their patience, trust and resilience working together amid challenging circumstances to help students learn and grow,” Cena said in a letter to the board. “Between now and June 30, I am committed toward helping MJUSD navigate its way through the COVID-19 experience, making preparations for the 2021-2022 school year and facilitating successful transition between administrations.”

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