Educational community mourns loss of a leader
Following his service to the SSD, he served the Big Valley district until recently, when his illness no longer allowed him to continue.
Evans’ greatest professional accomplishments came during his 14-year tenure as the SSD superintendent.
He brought a sense of purpose and direction to the district at a time when the local schools were facing many challenges. He oversaw the completion of Meadow View School; successfully negotiated resolution of a funding issue with the state of California; opened two Community Day Schools in the district; and placed the district on firm financial footing.
Evans mentored many administrators and teachers during his distinguished 35-year career in public education. In recognition of his service to the district, Gary McIntire, the current SSD superintendent, asked all the schools in the district to lower their flags to half-staff.
Cynthia Nellums, speaking on behalf of the Lassen County Charter of the Association of California School Administrators, said the organization “was proud to have Mr. Evans as a member and is mourning his loss. He will be remembered as a friend and fellow administrator, but also as a life-long educator who truly made a difference in the lives of many children in Lassen County.”
Lassen County Office of Education Superintendent Bob Owens said, “On behalf of the County Board of Education and all of the LCOE staff, we are greatly saddened by this loss. We send our condolences to his family, and we acknowledge and appreciate Mark’s contributions and dedication to public education. We will miss him.”
Evans was born in Oak Harbour, Wash., on Nov. 1, 1949.
He attended De Anza Junior College and graduated in 1969. He also earned an athletic scholarship to the University of California at Berkeley, where he graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in history in 1971.
Evans was an outstanding student athlete who earned All-American honors in water polo during his collegiate years. He also was a member of the U.S. National Water Polo team, and he traveled to Eastern Europe as a student ambassador of the sport.
He finished his college years by earning a master of arts degree in school administration from California State University, San Jose, in 1979.
Evans began his career in education in 1972 as an elementary school teacher in San Jose, Calif. He became the principal of Antelope Elementary School and Coleville High School and ultimately became the superintendent of the Eastern Sierra Unified School District in 1985.
Evans was the youngest superintendent in the state of California when he became superintendent of the ESUSD. He then moved to Mariposa where he became the county-wide superintendent in 1989.
Evans then served as superintendent at the SSD and the BVJUSD.
Evans is survived by his wife of 36 years, Janet; his two sons, Jay and Brad; his daughter-in-law, Kristina; and his three grandchildren, Amanda, Derek and Rachel.
No service for Evans has been announced.
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