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Ann Arbor Public Schools appoint new CFO, safety director

The announcement was made Friday, Nov. 10

ANN ARBOR – Ann Arbor Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jeanice Kerr Swift has announced two new hires in the school system: Ms. Amanda M. Matheson has accepted the position of chief financial officer, a position that was vacant since late August. Ms. Liz Nowland-Margolis has accepted the position of executive director of student & school safety.


Ms. Amanda M. Matheson 

Matheson comes to Ann Arbor with seven years experience from the Sault Ste. Marie Area Public Schools in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan where she served as business manager. There, her responsibilities included managing cash flow, developing the annual operating budget and amendments for approval by the Board of Education, overseeing operations of maintenance, direct supervision of the business office staff, food service, transportation and technology departments.

Superintendent Swift said of her appointment:

“It is a pleasure to welcome Ms. Amanda Matheson to the Ann Arbor Public Schools.  She brings a depth and breadth of knowledge and experience in financial and accounting practices as well as demonstrated success in school district fiscal management that will serve our District well. Ms. Matheson's deep commitment to serving students, schools and community through strong fiscal responsibility will prove an asset for the Ann Arbor Public Schools." 

In addition, she was an active member of the administration's negotiating team and managed millage and bond campaigns and worked closely with departments to maximize the use of federal, state and local funds to meet the supplemental and educational needs of students.

She also has financial experience as an auditor with Rehmann, an accounting firm. She is a licensed Certified Public Accountant for the State of Michigan and has earned additional certification as a school administrator, chief financial officer and human resource specialist from the Michigan School Business Officials.

Matheson shared:

“I am passionate about public education and believe that a stable financial foundation is critical to ensuring high quality teaching and learning.  I am very excited to join the Ann Arbor Public Schools and support the good work for children that is taking place in this community.”   

She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting from Lake Superior State University and a Master of Arts Degree in Educational Administration & Supervision from Northern Michigan University.

Ms. Liz Nowland-Margolis

Nowland-Margolis rejoins the district as executive director of student & school safety after working in the private sector for two years. 

She previously served for 12 years as the director of communications at Ann Arbor Public Schools.

According to the press release, moving forward her duties will include working "closely and collaboratively with city and township officials as well as other agencies and groups to address issues around pedestrian, bicycle and traffic safety; school building security; staff training in safety protocols; as well as design and implement educational campaigns regarding school safety."

 Dr. Swift remarked:

“It is a pleasure to welcome Liz Nowland-Margolis back to the Ann Arbor Public Schools. Ms. Margolis brings significant strengths to this position including extensive knowledge and experience in our city and community, a strong collaborative spirit as well as excellent leadership, organizational and communication skills. I look forward to having Ms. Margolis focused on the critically important district and community work to ensure student and school safety."

Nowland-Margolis has extensive experience in communitcations, marketing, public relations and business development. Before she joined AAPS in 2003, she worked for several local organizations including The Taubman Co. -Briarwood Mall, QLTD, Washtenaw United Way, The Fulkerson Group, Inc., The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority and WPAG Radio. Over the past two years, she served as senior manager of communications for NSF International.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Telecommunications from Michigan State University and is a life-long Ann Arbor resident. She also attended Ann Arbor Public Schools growing up. 

She is deeply connected to a number of community organizations and has served on the boards of The Michigan Theater, Ele's Place, YMCA and the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Chamber.

Nowland-Margolis shared:

“Student safety is my top priority and I look forward to working with the schools, parents and the community to ensure our students are safe from their commute to school, during the school day and arriving home each afternoon.”

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