Focused on the Future

At AZALAS, we stay focused on what matters.  That means always looking for the next aspiring Latino administrators for our great state.  We support the efforts on continued excellence and Latino leadership in education.  It is our goal to find and mentor Latino administrators, as we have successfully done for over  20 years!

Shifting Gears

Transitioning into the new year brings us a new name and clearly defined priorities.  We are at the forefront of important issues for Latino Administrators within the state.

Collaborating Within

We are always collaborating with our members, whether at one of many social mixers or our annual conference.  Our member base is continually expanding to the men and women of education around Arizona.

Hello All,

This notice is to remind you that it is time to renew your membership or pay your membership for the next year if you are not already a paid member.  The membership year is July to June.   if you have paid membership in the last three months, you will be carried into the new year.

This new year will have new opportunities for personal development and job announcements before they are posted on the web, giving members a head start on any announcements.  In addition, this year’s annual conference scheduled for October 28th and 29th at the San Marcos Golf Resort promises to be an outstanding opportunity for personal growth and networking.  Members will be given priority in the selection of breakout sessions!  If you have been receiving emails from us and not a member, we will continue to do so but only after our members are notified of employment opportunities or other important information or notices so you might want to consider paying your membership!

Your membership is paid on line at www.azalas.org and go to the Membership Tab and select the category that pertains to you.  Please note, once you pay your membership by PO, Credit Card or PayPal, an invoice will automatically be issued by the system.  So, copy the invoice for your records or for processing the PO.

The board of directors is working hard to provide members with a meaningful experience as member of AZALAS!  I hope you consider getting involved in working towards the goal of doing our best to “Ensure Excellence and Equity in Education” in Arizona

Panfilo H. Contreras, Executive Director

Arizona Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents

Get to Know Your AZALAS Leadership

Dr. Jose Leyba
Dr. Jose LeybaBoard Member - Retiree/Consultant
Jose A. Leyba, Consultant to K-12 & Community Colleges (2018) Jose A. Leyba currently serves as a consultant to Community Colleges in the following areas: Executive Searches, Board of Trustee Retreats, Leadership Development, Professional Development, Latinx Male Engagement, and Human Resources. He has served as a Search Consultant for ACCT in California and most recently conducted the Chancellor search for the Riverside Community College District and presented at the ACCT National Legislative Summit. He has current expertise and knowledge of California Community Colleges systems, laws, and the shared governance environment. Dr. Leyba has prior experience with the Los Angeles Community College District, having served as a consultant to the LACCD Board of Trustees and as an Interim President at Mission College.

In addition to California expertise, Dr. Leyba has extensive college administrative experience and formerly served as Provost, Associate Vice Chancellor and Acting Vice Chancellor of Human Resources at the Maricopa Community Colleges, and as Vice President for Corporate Development at Mesa Community College and then at the Maricopa Colleges District Foundation. Prior to Maricopa he also held positions of Director of Classified Personnel, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, and Superintendent of schools at K-12. While at the Maricopa system, (which is similar in size, complexity, and organization as LACCD), he supervised a complex HR system at the ten colleges and District Office, which served over 11,500 employees.

He directed the following successful systemic projects: successful IT conversion of the HR/Compensation/Benefits system to Peoplesoft; oversaw the implementation of Professional Development for HR staff at the District Office and the ten colleges; completed a compensation/classification study of the IT and management employee groups; served as the Chair of the Board of Trustees Negotiations Team; personally conducted President, Vice Chancellor and Chancellor searches: development of a strategic plan for the foundation.

Dr. Leyba has also served as Acting Vice President of Instruction and Vice Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor for the Pima Community College District. During his tenure at PCC, he also conducted a Human Resources review for the system. Furthermore, Dr. Leyba serves as Distinguished Faculty for the Dr. Carolyn Williams/National Council on Black American Affairs Community College Mid-Level Administrators Leadership Institute, and as Faculty and Mentor for the National Community College Hispanic Council, Presidential Fellows Leadership Development Program. He formerly served as an NCCHC Board Member. Both organizations are affiliate councils of the AACC and focus on developing diverse community college leaders. He currently serves as the Director of the Superintendents Leadership Academy for the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents and coaches new Superintendents through a collaborative program Grand Canyon University/Department of Education/Arizona School Administrators.

Jose is a graduate of Arizona State University with a BA degree in History, M.Ed. and
Ed.D. in Educational Administration and Supervision.

Ms. Debra Gomez
Ms. Debra GomezSecretary - Retiree/Consultant
Debra Gomez is a retired administrator currently working as a consultant providing executive coaching to school administrators. Her most recent position before retirement
as as the Executive Director of the Centers of Educational Innovation with University Public Schools affiliated with Arizona State University. Prior to this position, she served as the Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning in the Tempe Elementary School District for six years. Debra was also appointed as the Interim Superintendent of the District for the 2004-2005 school year, spanning 15 months.

She began her teaching career in 1978 after graduating from Arizona State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education with a Specialization in Bilingual/Multicultural Education. As a teacher, she was involved in writing grants for Title VII and training paraprofessionals. She earned a Masters Degree in Educational Administration & Supervision in 1984. Debra was a Bilingual Curriculum Specialist and developed and aligned curriculum in Spanish for bilingual classrooms. She has held several administrative positions including Assistant Principal, Principal, Director of Curriculum, Assistant Superintendent and Interim Superintendent. All her experience preceding her employment with Arizona State University had been in public school districts mostly located in the urban core of Phoenix.

Debra is actively involved in the Arizona Association for Latino Administrators and Superintendents having served as its president for three years. She has been a charter member of the association since its inception 30 years ago. She was also a board member of the National Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents.

AZALAS Prop 301 Statement Signed by Board of Directors

AZALAS Supports DREAMers and DACA!

AZALAS Partners with AZ Schools Now!

At the January meeting, AZALAS accepted an invitation to be affiliated with AZ Schools Now. We strongly encourage our stakeholders to become active with their coalition’s activities. Please visit their website at http://azschoolsnow.org to take the Strong Schools Pledge! AZALAS has taken the pledge along with many other organizations!

Join Now

We are always offering exciting benefits to our members.

Such as periodic social networking events, a golf tournament, and an annual collaboration conference
Join Now


Discovery: Through the Eyes of a Child, Honoring Educators From Birth to Lifelong Learning

By | June 15th, 2018|Categories: Home Page Story|

  Do you know an educator or a group that teaches with passion or excels in their field? Children’s Action Alliance is looking to honor educators or teaching organizations who are making a difference from [...]

Scholarship Opportunities

AZALAS HS Scholarships 20 awarded at $1000 each

The Arizona Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (AzALAS) is providing scholarships to graduating high school seniors. The twenty (20) scholarships are $1000 each and available to students who will be attending a higher institution of post-secondary education during the 2018-2019 school year. Applicants must meet the following criteria: 1. Be a graduating high school/charter school senior. 2. One parent must be of Hispanic heritage. 3. Possess a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 The Arizona Hispanic School Administrators Association Scholarship Committee directs all decisions regarding scholarship awards. Applicants are evaluated on quantitative and qualitative criteria, including academic achievement, extracurricular activities and student essays. Scholarships will be awarded at the discretion of the Committee and are contingent upon high school graduation, as well as, acceptance to a higher institution of post-secondary education. NOTE: Incomplete application packages will not be accepted. The scholarship enrollment will be announced in early 2019.

Ben Barcon Scholarship Awarded at the 2018 AZALAS Annual Conference

As the Latino population continues to grow in the United States, the need for more Latino school administrators is greater than ever. In 2012 Latino children became the largest ethnic group in K-12 public schools in Arizona. However in 2016 only 15% of Administrative positions were held by Latino School Leaders in K-12 public schools in Arizona. The Ben Barcon Scholarship is funded by donations from various activities sponsored by AZALAS. AZALAS recognizes Latino administrators for their leadership by providing assistance toward an advanced degree in education. The top recipient will receive a one-time $5,000 scholarship award. The scholarship will be made payable to the recipient and will be awarded at the November Annual Conference. The deadline for scholarship application will be announced in early 2018.

Alejandro Perez Scholarship Awarded at the 2018 AZALAS AnnualConference

As the Latino population continues to grow in the United States, the need for more Latino school administrators is greater than ever. In 2012 Latino children became the largest ethnic group in K-12 public schools in Arizona. However in 2016 only 15% of Administrative positions were held by Latino School Leaders in K-12 public schools in Arizona. AZALAS is offering a $10,000 scholarship this year, thanks to our partner, McCarthy Building Companies, Inc., who is co-sponsoring the scholarship for the third consecutive year ($5,000 from the Annual Alejandro Perez Memorial Golf Tournament & $5,000 from McCarthy). The scholarship will be awarded at the November Annual Conference. The deadline for scholarship application will be announced in early 2018.

Annual Conference Awards, Nominations and Highlights

Conference Scholarship Awardees

Conference Entertainment – Student Mariachis – Sunnyside High School Diablitos

Outstanding Student Panel

From the Blog

Service Dogs in Schools: U.S. Supreme Court to Review Administrative Considerations

Do you have patrons, vendors, students or clients who visit your site with a service  dog? The U.S. Supreme Court recently announced that it will review the issue of service dogs in schools. The justices [...]

By | January 17th, 2017|Categories: newhomeposts|0 Comments
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The Governor's Office has released the Proposed Budget for next year.
Learn More

The Final ESSA Regulations Have Been Released

To read the entire 383 page document click here

For the four page press release click here

To find the six page summary click here

We are thankful to our sponsors!

Please click on a sponsor logo to be taken to their website.  You may also visit our Sponsors page to learn more about our sponsors or become a sponsor.