New Hilliard Superintendent John Marschhausen says accessibility, communication and preparation are his three components for effective leadership.

New Hilliard Superintendent John Marschhausen says accessibility, communication and preparation are his three components for effective leadership.

Given that, he already has put preparation into practice.

Marschhausen's first day on the job was July 1, but the former Loveland superintendent has been preparing in earnest since March 4, when the Hilliard school board hired him as the successor to Dale McVey, who retired June 30.

Marschhausen, 42, wore out tires on Interstate 71 in his efforts to meet individually with administrators, directors and each school board member, as well as to close on a house in Hilliard.

"Education is not a destination. ... It is a (journey) and I look forward to working with everyone in the community to make it the best it can be every day," Marschhausen said.

Hilliard is the third district Marschhausen has led, following three years at Loveland City School and five at East Knox Local Schools.

"I feel incredibly blessed to lead this district," said Marschhausen, who lauded McVey for the "phenomenal team" he assembled.

Marschhausen also has had a hand in selecting new administrators, including those to succeed the other two finalists for the superintendent post.

Steve Estepp, former executive director of K-12 curriculum and instruction, and David Stewart, former principal of Bradley High School, took administrative posts with other districts after Marschhausen was named superintendent.

Kim Halley, the former director of elementary education for Hilliard schools, was named as Estepp's successor; Jennifer Adams, a former student services coordinator, will succeed Halley.

Melinda Mordarski also was promoted from assistant principal to principal at Bradley.

"That nearly every new hire for this school year came from within the district speaks so much to its capacity for quality that has been cultivated," Marschhausen said.

Marschhausen said he typically begins each work day before sunrise, usually waking about 4:45 a.m. and going to a gym.

"It's about the only time I have solitude," said Marschhausen, an avid runner. "That time is therapeutic for me. I plan the day.

"As superintendent, I am part of making a difference in the lives of children every day, and that is too important not to be fully prepared every day."

He said he usually is asleep by 11 p.m.

"Friday night football games can make for a long day (and) I was probably the only person who didn't see the Game 7 (of the NBA Finals)," Marschhausen said.

His immediate priorities as superintendent include strengthening the existing relationships with district staff members; meeting new partners, including Hilliard, Norwich Township and other community leaders; and being available to the community, especially the parents of children attending Hilliard schools.

Marschhausen said he will be visible in the community and he wants to be approachable.

"I plan to go to at least one sporting event or performance at each of our district's schools," Marschhausen said. "I want people to know that in addition to being a superintendent, I am a resident of Hilliard and a dad."

He and his wife, Susan, have two daughters. Jordan will be a freshman at Bradley High School and Emily will attend Hilliard Station Sixth Grade School.