Dr. Stella M. Kemp brings more than 30 years of experience as a teacher, site administrator, regional administrator, and district office administrator to Santa Clara Unified School District.
Prior to her appointment as the district’s new superintendent, Dr. Kemp served nearly 20 years as an education administrator in both Texas and California. Her experience includes work as a regional consultant specializing in leadership development; as a district office administrator focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education; as a school transformation coach for site administrators; work to design and implement leadership training; and most recently as the superintendent in San Bruno Park School District.
After completing her undergraduate degree, Dr. Kemp taught middle school science in Austin Independent School District in Texas before moving to Germany to work with the Department of Defense Dependents Schools where she taught life science, advanced placement (AP) biology, German, and United States history. Dr. Kemp returned to the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas where she taught high school chemistry, served as a high school administrator, and then as a leadership consultant at the Region XI Service Center. In 2003, Dr. Kemp and her family relocated to California, where she served as a middle school principal, director of professional development and STEM, and an assistant superintendent of educational services in the Los Angeles and San Jose areas. During this period, through her leadership, Dr. Kemp gained recognition for her ability to innovate and transform educational systems. Her accomplishments include launching innovative school designs and transforming professional development delivery.
While serving as the superintendent in San Bruno, Dr. Kemp’s work focused on the fiscal recovery and education transformation work of the district. Central to the success of the transformation efforts in San Bruno was the development of the district’s vision, Schools with Tomorrow Inside. Through her leadership work, Dr. Kemp successfully lead the facilities improvement visioning and planning, including passage of Measure X, a $79M dollar general obligation bond. In her tenure, she wrote grants to support the educational transformation programming efforts through partnerships with local foundations and businesses, including YouTube. Most recently, the district completed visioning its educational transformation through the Portrait of the Graduate.
Dr. Kemp was born in Bremerhaven, Germany. At the age of five, her family moved to Georgia, and after a few years moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Dr. Kemp attended the University of Texas in Austin, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in education. She completed her master's degree in education at Texas Woman’s University and her doctorate in education from the University of North Texas, both located in Denton, Texas.
Dr. Kemp is a proud mother of two adult daughters, Julia and Jenny. Dr. Kemp has been married to her husband, Jeff Case, for the past 17 years, and enjoys spending time with family traveling, playing golf, sailing, and heading to the beach. She and her family relocated to the Santa Clara Unified area and are happily exploring all that this community has to offer.
As a community member, Dr. Kemp has served on multiple boards in her community. Most recently, she has served as a member of the San Bruno Rotary and San Bruno Kiwanis Club, and in the past has served as on PTAs, Girl Scout leader, and in various community organizations. Additionally, Dr. Kemp has served as an adjunct instructor for Chapman University. Upon joining SCUSD and moving into the school district, Dr. Kemp became a member of Santa Clara Rotary.