UMSL alumnus Grayling Tobias was named Hazelwood School District superintendent on Nov. 6.

As a two-sport athlete at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, Grayling Tobias excelled both on the basketball court and baseball field. But it was in the classroom where he found his true passion while earning a bachelor’s degree in education. Tobias was named superintendent for the Hazelwood (Mo.) School District on Nov. 6 by the district’s Board of Education.

“It is an honor and privilege to serve our students and this community as superintendent,” Tobias said in a statement issued by the district. “We want our district’s Board of Education, community and staff to know that we are not going to let our students down. We want to reassure everyone we will continue to move forward. We have trust and confidence in the people who work closest to our students, and I know that our students will succeed at high levels.”

Tobias was appointed interim superintendent in August. Prior to that, he has served as the district’s assistant superintendent for learning. Since joining the district in 2002, he’s also served as director of secondary education and assistant superintendent for accountability. Tobias has served as a middle school principal in the Riverview Gardens School District in north St. Louis County and middle school assistant principal, high school assistant principal and teacher in the Parkway School District in west St. Louis County.

Tobias, who graduated from UMSL in 1980, also tried his hand at professional baseball. He played his way up to a stint with the Detroit Tigers’ AA club, the Montgomery (Ala.) Rebels. But after being cut in his third season, he returned to St. Louis and to the classroom.

The Hazelwood School District serves more than 18,000 students and is the second largest district in St. Louis County. Communities in the district include Hazelwood, Black Jack, Spanish Lake, a large section of Florissant, portions of Bridgeton, Bellefontaine Neighbors, Ferguson and several square miles of unincorporated St. Louis County.

Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton