Kathy Prather became the Superintendent/CEO of Pima JTED on July 1, 2018, one year after being appointed as the district’s Deputy Superintendent. Her career in education spans 33 years and multiple locations throughout Arizona, including Rough Rock High School, Prescott College, Northwest Pioneer College, Mohave Community College, Mohave High School, Colorado River Union High School District, Tucson Unified School District, and Sunnyside Unified School District. She entered the field of education after a successful career in the film and television media industry.
She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration-Management, a Master of Arts Degree in Vocational Technical Education, and multiple certifications from the Arizona Department of Education including Superintendent, Principal and Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher.
Each year, thousands of students in the CTE programs she oversees receive nationally-recognized industry certifications, licenses and credentials as well as dual college credit from Pima Community College and/or concurrent tuition credit from the University of Arizona. The innovative programs she has developed over the years have captured the attention of local, national and international media including CNN Money in 2016, Korean News Network in 2015, Manufacturing News in 2016, Arizona Public Media-PBS in 2014, District Administrator Magazine in January 2017, Mrs. Green’s World on iHeart Radio and many local network news broadcast features.
Kathy is the 2023 Greater Tucson Leadership Woman of the Year and currently serves as a member of Congressman Juan Ciscomani’s Citizens Advisory Council, the Southern Arizona Workforce Leadership Academy Advisory Council, the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, the Tucson Metro Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the United Way Cradle to Career Leadership Committee, the Metropolitan Education Commission, the Pima County Workforce Investment Board, Banner University Medicine Business Advisory Committee and Tucson’s Leading Women, and has previously served on the Board of Directors of Habitat for Humanity Tucson and the Southern Arizona Chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness. The Association for Career and Technical Education of Arizona (ACTEAZ) recognized Kathy’s contributions to CTE with their 2011 Administrator of the Year Award, and again with the 2016 ACTEAZ Lifetime Achievement Award. Kathy served on the Board of the National Council of Local Administrators (NCLA) from 2008-2015 as well as the Executive Board of the Arizona Council of Occupational and Vocational Administrators (ACOVA) from 2006-2014.
Kathy was instrumental in the formation of the Pima County Joint Technological Education District #11, which is now known as Pima JTED. Prior to the JTED Proposition 400 item being listed on the ballot in 2006, she led community forums and made multiple presentations to business, industry and local school district governing boards.
Today, Kathy remains committed to forging mutually beneficial partnerships with business, community, and educational leaders to strengthen Pima JTED’s programs which provide local industry with the skilled workforce they need to thrive. She is actively transforming the culture at Pima JTED to the Growth Mindset to elevate students’ experiences, and employee job satisfaction. One of her top priorities is continuing to develop students’ professional skills so that they are ready to succeed in both college and careers.
Pima JTED continues to bring over $30 million dollars annually in supplemental funding for satellite and central CTE programs in Pima, Santa Cruz and Pinal Counties.
A native Tucsonan, Kathy lives with her husband Brad Prather, a retired teacher. They have two grown children, and one granddaughter.