D211 Post: Township High School District 211 Daniel E. Cates named ‘Superintendent of Distinction’



Dr. Daniel E. Cates, superintendent of Township High School District 211, has been named the 2018 Superintendent of Distinction by his colleagues in the North Cook Region of the Illinois Association of School Administrators (IASA).

Cates was honored at an awards luncheon May 1 in Springfield. State Superintendent Dr. Tony Smith was the featured speaker at the luncheon where 21 IASA regional Superintendents of Distinction were honored.

“I am humbled to be recognized for our work on behalf of students in the District 211 community. Each day as superintendent holds the opportunity to push oneself to make meaningful change in the direction of our students’ lives and I am grateful for this privilege and responsibility,” said Cates, who has been an educator for 26 years, as school psychologist, director of special education, associate superintendent and as Superintendent for the past four years. “The moment provides an opportunity to highlight the shared results of many talented professionals in our District committed to creating as many advantages as possible for our students.”

Those nominating Cates made special notation of his many accomplishments in the school district during his tenure including:

  •  Boosting enrollment for students enrolled in dual college-credit and Advanced Placement courses.
  • Leading a comprehensive community engagement initiative resulting in a detailed five-year Strategic Plan.
  • Creating Individualized Student Readiness Plan for students to establish and monitor college and career pathways, academic goals, monitor wellness and involvement and track competitive skills for today’s workplace, all of which was funded through a national partnership grant recognizing the district’s successes with career pathways and student internships.
  • Responsibly managing district resources to become debt free to increase investment returns to pre-paying future pension obligations and to deliver more than $50 million in facility improvements using existing funds with no debt.

Dr. Daniel Cates, Superintendent for Township High School District 211, speaks with a student during the Code 211 hackathon at Palatine High School, Jan. 20.

“These unique individuals in the field of Illinois public education are providing exceptional leadership and are industrious in developing creative contributions that elevate the success of students in their districts and support solutions to growing demands. These ‘Superintendents of Distinction’ were selected by their peers in their regions because of the dedication, commitment and leadership they have demonstrated,” said IASA Executive Director Dr. Brent Clark.

The fourth annual luncheon again was sponsored by Horace Mann, one of the nation’s largest insurers focusing on the needs of educators.

Cates earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame, his Ph.D. from Indiana University, and his school administration and superintendent endorsement from Loyola University.

“Superintendents work tirelessly to keep our schools safe while providing resources and support to our educators teaching our future leaders,” said Marita Zuraitis, Horace Mann President and Chief Executive Officer. “As a company founded by educators for educators, I applaud the IASA ‘Superintendents of Distinction’ for continually looking for ways to create the best learning environment for educators and their students.”

He and his wife Susan have been married 26 years.