Aurora Public Schools Superintendent Rico Munn speaks to those in attendance for a ribbon cutting to commemorate the opening of a new College and Career Center, Aug. 24, 2021 at William Smith High School. Photo by PHILIP B. POSTON/Sentinel Colorado

AURORA | After stepping down as Aurora Public Schools superintendent in December, Rico Munn will be joining the leadership team at Colorado State University immediately after his contract with the district ends in July.

Munn will serve as CSU president Amy Parson’s chief of staff, according to a Thursday news release from the university announcing new hires. The position, which includes overseeing operations and budgets and managing special projects, has been filled by an interim since June.

“Rico and I have worked together for many years, and I have enormous trust in his judgment and experience,” Parsons said in a statement. “As head of one of the state’s largest and most diverse school districts, he brings a deep understanding of Colorado education at all levels that will be invaluable as we seek to strengthen our commitment to educational access and equity. He also has considerable experience leading large teams of people in a complex organization, and that managerial strength will help us keep all of our University priorities and goals on track.”

Munn has previous ties to CSU, having served on the Board of Governors of the CSU System from 2013 to 2020.

Munn served as superintendent of APS, Colorado’s fifth-largest school district, from 2013 through 2022. In early December, he announced that he would not be seeking to renew his contract as superintendent once it expired June 30. As part of the transition, he officially stepped down as superintendent at the end of 2022 and is serving in an advisory role this semester. His chief of staff, Mark Seglem, is currently interim superintendent.

Munn was vague about his reasons for leaving, citing a “conflict of vision” with the current school board. He and the board have clashed at times during his tenure, particularly over the past year as the district wrestled with the unpopular decision to close several elementary schools as part of Blueprint APS.

In a December interview with the Sentinel, Munn said that he did not yet know what his future plans would be. 

“I’m going to be available to the district for some time period, then I’ll be exploring what’s next for me,” he said.

Munn’s first day as chief of staff is July 1, the release said.

Munn’s departure contract with APS states that from July to December of this year he will serve as a contractor for the district to help advise the new superintendent. A representative from the district did not immediately respond to a question about whether this would still be in place.

APS has contracted with the search firm HYA to find Munn’s replacement. The firm is currently soliciting feedback from the community about what it wants in a new superintendent, and is currently accepting applications for the position.

HYA vice president Mike Ritchie, who is leading the search, said that it plans to present a slate of candidates to the school board in mid-March and hopes to announce the selection in early May.

Join the Conversation

1 Comment

  1. “He would not be seeking to renew his contract.” I thought the board did not renew his contract. Are you saying he did not want to stay or that the Board did not want him to stay. What is the truth. Report what is correct please.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *