Robert Brogdon has served as an integral piece of Turlock Unified School District’s technology department for the past 16 years, and now he’ll oversee it.
On July 9, Brogdon was appointed to the position of Director of Technology Operations for TUSD — the same school district where he first began working as a night custodian 20 years ago. As he cleaned classrooms and kept Dennis Earl Elementary School looking its best back in 1999, Brogdon was also a fulltime student at Stanislaus State working toward his Computer Information Systems degree. After graduating in 2002, he was hired a year later as the Lead Computer Repair Technician at TUSD, and then accepted the position of Network Systems Supervisor a decade later.
These roles over the years prepared him for his new title within a district that has made great technological strides in recent years, Brogdon said.
“Over the last six years as a network supervisor, I have learned so much about being a leader. Working with department staff, leading large-scale projects and implementations along with many professional development opportunities have equipped me with the skills to be an effective leader,” he said.
Technology’s role in TUSD has increased dramatically during that time, with the district prioritizing the need to perfect its infrastructure prior to placing devices, like Chromebooks, in classrooms. Over the last few years Brogdon has helped TUSD complete a full network upgrade, deploy a centralized wireless network district-wide and upgrade its virtual server infrastructure.
This summer, TUSD will complete its 1:1 initiative, meaning there will be one Chromebook for each student across all sites.
While the district has made astronomical progress when it comes to technology, Brogdon still has goals he’d like to achieve in his new position.
“I want to simplify network management, increase the amount of automation in order to improve efficiency and continue to develop a culture of customer service within the department.”Robert Brogdon
“My initial goal is to maintain the momentum that we, as a department, have attained over the last six years,” Brogdon said. “I want to simplify network management, increase the amount of automation in order to improve efficiency and continue to develop a culture of customer service within the department.”
Director of Technology Operations is a newly-created position within the district. Jay Brem formerly served as TUSD’s Director of Technology and Innovation, but now joins Julien Elementary as the school’s assistant principal. Now, Brogdon will take the reigns under a new title.
“Clearly, they have faith in me and my abilities…the outpouring of support has been amazing,” Brogdon said.
As Director of Technology Operations, Brogdon’s primary responsibility is to provide reliable technology infrastructure and equipment which will consistently allow TUSD educators to deliver instruction to students that is both effective and engaging. Brogdon and his team also oversee the district’s network security, ensuring everything runs smoothly across TUSD’s 15 schools, offices and 20,000 devices.
“Robert’s extensive technology background is seen through the development of our District’s infrastructure advancement and our progress in moving to 1:1 with students and devices,” TUSD Superintendent Dana Salles Trevethan said in a statement announcing Brogdon’s new position. “We are excited to have Robert on our leadership team with his talents and expertise; his contributions will continue to support our TUSD community and vision for creating opportunities and access for all stakeholders.”
Other milestones within the district that were reached while Brogdon served in previous roles include a partnership with his alma mater Stanislaus State which provides internship positions within the department during the spring semester. The technology department has also employed TUSD student workers during the past three summer vacations, providing valuable experience and perhaps creating the next generation of technology leaders.
“(Technology) is a tool that can have an enormous impact on education by engaging students and making learning fun,” Brogdon said. “We have something special here in TUSD and I truly enjoy working with a wide variety of talented and amazing people in the district.”