Welcome to Our New Board Members!
Posted on 05/06/2020
We are happy to welcome two new Board of Education members, Kris Sauter and Gary Jahnke.

Both were elected in 2020 and their first terms will expire in 2023. Both currently serve as members, with Kris Sauter also serving as the CESA 6 Delegate.

Learn more about all of our Board members here.

Sauter, KrisAfter serving as an educator with the Appleton Area School District (AASD) for 29 years, Kris is honored to be joining the AASD Board of Education. Kris, her late husband, Jay, and their daughters Elizabeth and Kathryn, attended AASD schools and graduated from Appleton East High School. 

Kris began her career at Lawrence University culminating in a position as Assistant Director of Alumni Relations. She then pursued a teaching career, earning a Bachelor of Science degree with certification in elementary and special education from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Kris served as a special education and elementary teacher with the AASD and after retiring from full-time teaching, served as a substitute teacher.  

A message from Kris

“Education has always been a family priority. During my teaching career, I was privileged to collaborate with AASD community members who shared their dedication, vision, and wisdom to meet the diverse educational, social, behavioral, and emotional needs of each student. I have also witnessed the power of positive educational experiences in the lives of my students and their families. 

As a lifelong resident of Appleton and a proud product of Appleton public schools with current family members attending AASD schools, I strive to contribute to continued student success experiences in our school district. Strong public schools are important assets to our community contributing to the overall positive quality of life. I look forward to learning and collaborating with the AASD community and am honored to serve as a member of the AASD Board of Education.”



Jahnke, GaryGary Jahnke’s story begins on a dairy farm in Ripon, WI where he was blessed to have parents that encouraged their children to do well in school and participate in extra-curricular activities.

Gary holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh and a Masters of Business Administration degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison.

Gary lives in Appleton with his wife Debbie. They have a daughter Caitlin who attended Appleton Schools, taught at Janet Berry, and currently teaches in Ripon.

As founder and President of Huzzard Systems, Gary not only spends his time running a company but has dedicated a great amount of time serving on numerous non-profit committees and boards over the last 20 years.

In 2015, Gary was the recipient of the Appleton Education Foundation Thomas G. Scullen Leadership Award. In 2019, Gary was the Keynote Speaker at the Appleton Area School District Welcome Back Staff Event.

When not advancing education locally, you will find Gary spending time with his family including daughter Caitlin, son-in-law Nick (who is a STEM teacher), and his rambunctious grandsons Karl and Vincent.

A message from Gary

"I am very honored to have been elected to serve on the Appleton Area School District Board of Education. Being a member of the School Board means helping set the vision for preparing our students to succeed, creating policy and upholding policy, and creating and sustaining relationships with many different stakeholders.

But more than anything, especially in this time of uncertainty, being a member of the AASD School Board means being a leader.  

While I will certainly participate and take deep dives into many different subject matters, I am particularly interested in:
• Helping define what school will look like for the rest of this school year, summer school, and next school year. What best practices have surfaced?  What barriers exist? What opportunities exist?
• Revisiting the Future Needs Study and analyzing how the learning currently being delivered affects the needs of the district in the long-term. How have our conclusions and recommendations changed?
• Developing a plan to reward our educators and attract top talent. We need to appreciate, respect, and compensate appropriately the most valuable piece in the process of delivering an outstanding education experience – our AASD educators!
• Extending Career Based Learning opportunities to more students, and, partner with more organizations. We must provide every student with multiple chances to explore careers that match their interests, skills, and abilities by the time they graduate.

I look forward to serving and working with all of you."
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