Assistant Professor of Practice, Co-Director
Betty Sue Sparks is Assistant Professor of Practice and Principal-in-Residence at the University of Tennessee’s Center for Educational Leadership. She completed all her undergraduate and graduate work at UT Knoxville. She is a coach and mentor for Leadership Academy Fellows, serves as a mentor to new and aspiring school leaders, and offers professional development support to assist school leaders with embedding learning. She is a frequent presenter on leadership development at both national and state conferences. She has served as the president of the Tennessee Association of School Personnel Administrators (TASPA) and the Tennessee Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (TASCD).
Prior to her work with the University of Tennessee, Sparks retired from Knox County Schools where she served as teacher, principal, supervisor and Director of Human Resources. While HR director, she received certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) and developed curriculum and provided training for more than 200 administrators. In addition, she served as a member of the KCS negotiations team and planned and facilitated the new administrator training program. As a certified Gallup Strengths Coach she is a strong advocate for strengths based leadership. She seeks to understand what makes people unique and special so that she can help them to create excellence.