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TASA’s “Inspiring Leaders” tagline is not just a reminder of TASA’s commitment to leadership development; it describes our members themselves — school leaders who inspire others as they work to prepare future-ready students. Meet Devin Padavil, one of those Inspiring Leaders.

Taylor ISD welcomed Dr. Devin Padavil as superintendent earlier this year. Prior to his current post, Padavil served as assistant superintendent of Fort Bend ISD for nearly four years. While moving to a new district in the middle of a school year, and during a global pandemic, presented a unique set of challenges, Padavil came to Taylor excited to help move the district forward with a commitment toward preserving the tight-knit community’s traditions and foundations.

“The people of Taylor ISD give me the greatest sense of pride,” Padavil says. “These are educators and families who are truly invested in the potential of each student and believe in the future of our school district. Our team has been intentional about meaningful change and the community has embraced it.”

While Padavil has only served for a number of months in Taylor, he’s already made an impact on other district staff, including Tiffany Commerford Whitsel, assistant superintendent of organizational management.

“Devin Padavil is the epitome of a leader who motivates others to find their greatest potential,” Whitsel says. “Devin has been in Taylor ISD a short time, but he has already modeled what it takes to reach your greatest potential. He has a strategic mindset, he is innovative, a great communicator, and supportive of faculty, staff and students.”

Padavil says he feels personally compelled to discover the potential in other people and help them realize it. Taylor ISD’s mission statement is to “Inspire, equip and empower each student to achieve their unique potential,” and he takes that statement to heart.

“The thing that keeps me going is the idea that someone will be better off because of our work. I find fulfillment in helping other people reach their goals, mostly because I grew up a disadvantaged student who underperformed until I had educators inspire me. I consider it my purpose to give back in the same way.”

Networking and connecting with other administrators is an important part of what drives Padavil, motivating him and keeping him on track as he strives to be an inspiring leader.

“I reach out to as many other administrators and leaders as possible,” he says.” “This allows me to reflect, get consultation and sometimes hold a mirror up to myself to make sure I am being the leader I am meant to be for others. The more I talk to other leaders, the sharper I become.”