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Superintendent Dr. Lisa Sayles-Adams

Photo of Superintendent Dr. Lisa Sayles-Adams

Superintendent Dr. Lisa Sayles-Adams
100-Day Plan

Dr. Lisa Sayles-Adams has a distinguished career in educational leadership spanning more than two decades. Beginning in Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) from 1996 to 2004, she held various roles including teacher and coordinator, ultimately becoming the principal at the City Alternative High School. After leaving MPS, Sayles-Adams served as a principal in elementary and secondary schools from 2003 to 2014 in both Clayton County Schools in Georgia and St. Paul Public Schools (SPPS) before being appointed as an assistant superintendent in SPPS, a role she also later held in ISD 622 (North St. Paul-Maplewood-Oakdale). 

From 2020 to 2024, Dr. Sayles-Adams served as Superintendent of Eastern Carver County Schools, leading a district of 9,600 students. She was selected in December 2023 to serve as MPS Superintendent, beginning in February 2024.
Dr. Sayles-Adams' academic background further solidifies her commitment to excellence. In 2022, she earned her doctorate in Educational Leadership from Minnesota State University, Mankato. She also holds Pre-school through 12th-grade Administrative Licensure from St. Mary's University (2003), a Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis (2002), and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Minnesota (1992).

Current Board Appointments

  • American Association of School Administrators (AASA)
  • Council of Great City Schools (CGCS)
  • Minnesota Association of School Administrators (MASA)
  • Association of Metropolitan School Districts (AMSD)
  • Generation Next
  • Achieve Twin Cities
  • Youth Coordinating Board (YCB)

Recent Accomplishments and Recognitions

  • Recipient of the MASA Kay E. Jacobs Memorial Award (2023)
  • Recipient of the Minnesota School Public Relations Association (MSPRA) Champion of Communications Award (2023)
  • MASA 15 Years of Service Recognition (2022)
  • Recipient of the Rotary Club of St. Paul Education Forward Award (2017 & 2018)
  • Recipient of the Minnesota State University Mankato Racial Equity Conference Scholarship (2018)
  • Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) Region 2AA Committee/Vice President (term not served due to new position)

The superintendent of schools is the primary leader responsible for managing the school district. The superintendent works with all staff, families and the larger community to ensure that students receive the anti-racist, holistic education outlined in the MPS Strategic Plan. The superintendent sets academic priorities and serves as the leading decision-maker for Minneapolis Public Schools.

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Superintendent's Cabinet

The Superintendent's Cabinet is comprised of division and department leaders.

Leadership Organizational Chart