Contra Costa County officially has a new superintendent of schools to serve its stakeholders and execute policy for the betterment of its students.
Lynn Mackey was sworn into office Monday afternoon at the county Office of Education’s building in Pleasant Hill. She will be serving a four-year term after winning over voters in November's election by a comfortable margin.
"I am thrilled and honored to officially assume my new role," Mackey said prior to her inauguration. “I am committed to continue to work and advocate for all students in our county, and to assist and support our schools and school districts in preparing students for college, career and life – starting with early childhood education."
An educator with 21 years of experience working with the superintendent’s office, as a deputy superintendent Mackey served the county in a variety of capacities and directed the agency’s Educational Services department.
She is a seasoned teacher and administrator who began her career teaching some of the community’s most vulnerable students within the county detention facilities. Mackey would eventually become the principal of the county’s Court and Community Schools, and was proclaimed Administrator of the Year by the county in 2012 and 2018.
“Lynn truly understands the importance of a good education,” said departing superintendent Karen Sakata. “She lives and breathes our mantra that ‘all kids are our kids,’ and I know that the Contra Costa County Office of Education will remain in good hands.”
Sakata decided to not run for re-election, opting to retire after 41 years in education. After Sakata, Mackey is only the second woman in the county’s history to hold the post of Superintendent of Schools.
"The County Office of Education has continued its great reputation in Contra Costa County and beyond, thanks largely to Karen Sakata’s leadership during the past four years,” Mackey said of her predecessor.
In the runoff election for superintendent Mackey acquired 199,929 votes for a total of 58.22%, she soundly defeated Mt. Diablo school board member Cheryl Hansen, who earned 143,461 votes for the remaining 41.78%.
The pair faced off after Mackey achieved a commanding lead in June’s primary election, achieving 46.53% of total votes to Hansen’s 30.35%, the remainder of votes went to Concord City Councilman Ronald Leone who was edged out.
Mackey holds a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Cal State East Bay. According to Voter’s Edge, in addition to her work with the Contra Costa County Office of Education she is a member of Contra Costa Human Trafficking Coalition and a Steering Committee member for the Contra Costa Alliance to End Abuse.