Over the past 131 years, the mission of St. John’s Military School has been to provide each cadet with the opportunity to grow spiritually, morally, intellectually, and physically in a safe and structured environment. Over the years, the school has earned the highest reputation for academic success, with 90 percent or more of its graduates being accepted into institutions of higher learning, and receiving recognition for its powerful practices by AdvancED. While St. John’s has earned its academic reputation over more than a century, in the recent past, it has made significant strides to advance and expand its academic partnerships with local institutions of higher learning, and create unique, individualized education plans to give each cadet a personalized enrichment experience.
These efforts have been in no small part thanks to one individual: Ginger Wooten, a leader who has dedicated the past 19 years of her career in service to St. John’s, having most recently served as the school’s academic dean for 10 years. Now, Wooten is stepping into a new role, the role of Vice President of St. John’s Military School. Wooten brings with her a vision and commitment to academic success and a commitment to fostering a safe, structured learning environment where young men of today become leaders of tomorrow.
Wooten began her career at St. John’s as an academic counselor, a role she held for eight years. Shortly after she transitioned into the school’s admissions department, Wooten was asked to take on the position of academic dean on an interim basis. The school’s leadership quickly realized that she had the skills, determination, and vision needed to lead the school’s academic efforts long-term. Now, Wooten will begin the next chapter in her life at St. John’s and step into her next challenge: service alongside St. John’s President, Colonel William J. Clark as vice president.
“This opportunity means so much to me,” Wooten said. “A person can’t even put into words what a place like St. John’s means to them, and receiving this vote of confidence from the school’s leadership, and having them believe in my dedication, means a whole lot to me.”
According to Clark, Wooten was the ideal fit for the role of vice president.
“When you look at Ginger, what you notice quickly is that she is a leader,” said Clark. “To have served as our academic dean, and now to serve as our vice president, one has to be a leader. Her capabilities encompass so many things. She understands how to get a job done, and she understands people. Her understanding of St. John’s and our philosophies, her commitment to our mission, and her leadership capabilities make her the right person for this position.”
Wooten plans to draw on her experiences leading St. John’s academic achievements as she transitions into a position that will give her opportunities to positively impact the school’s overall direction at a higher level.
“The opportunity to serve St. John’s in my new role is significantly meaningful to me,” she said. “I am unsure how to express accurately, the depth of feeling I have for the St. John’s family; the cadets, parents, staff, faculty, and board of trustee members. I am grateful for receiving this vote of confidence from the school’s leadership. I have a great sense of understanding for the responsibilities that accompany my position. I look forward to working with my new team.”
President Clark is confident that the cadets at St. John’s will benefit from Wooten’s expanded role at the school.
“When you promote someone with that much potential, they make the organization better,” Clark said. “Our cadets will benefit from Ginger now working in a broader capacity for the school. Her efforts will bring much greater benefits to our young men, including more opportunities, more communication, and more resources.”
As the summer begins to wind down and the 131st Corps of Cadets make plans to return to campus, Wooten has her own plans for the year ahead.
“Our focus for this school year is on enrollment,” Wooten said. “As enrollment grows, we plan to make improvements to buildings on campus and facilities such as our classrooms, barracks, and athletic facilities, and on identifying additional activities for the cadets. We will continue to partner with local colleges to give our cadets a head start once they graduate from St. John’s. We want to be as strong as we can be in every area so that we can continue to serve our cadets and their families at the highest possible level.”
Clark is also looking ahead to the next school year with every confidence in his new vice president.
“Ginger has a passion for this school and for what we do; her integrity is above reproach,” he said. “She will always do the right thing at the right time, even when no one is looking- the marks of a true leader.”