Cleve A. Pell and Susanna Contreras Smith
Susanna Contreras Smith Appointed as New Superintendent, Joining Veteran Cleve Pell
The Montebello Unified Board of Education recently unanimously appointed two veteran educators to fill the Superintendent positions for the 30,000-student school district. Susanna Contreras Smith, who was hired in July as MUSD’s Associate Superintendent of Accountability and Compliance, will serve in the district’s top post alongside veteran Superintendent Cleve Pell. The district will not backfill Contreras Smith’s former position, which will translate into a significant cost savings for the district.
Susanna Contreras Smith
Known for her experience, dedication and passion for education, Susanna Contreras Smith formerly worked for 12 years at the El Rancho Unified School District, serving as the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for two years before being promoted to the Assistant Superintendent of Education. Prior to her employment in the Pico Rivera based school district, the East Los Angeles native served as a principal in Bassett Unified School District. Her extensive history in education also includes 17 years as a classroom teacher in El Monte’s Mountain View School District.
Contreras Smith vowed to work collaboratively with all district stakeholders to continue the district’s mission to make every MUSD student college and career ready. A graduate of Garfield High School, Contreras Smith earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees, as well as her teaching and administrative credentials.
With extensive experience and training and a strong commitment to public education, Cleve Pell was appointed as the Superintendent of the Montebello Unified School District in June 2010.
After serving in the U.S. Navy, Pell graduated from Arizona State University and became a public school educator in 1964. He has served in the Montebello Unified School District as a Math teacher, Counselor, Football Coach, Assistant Principal, Principal, Assistant Director, and Director of Adult Education. His commitment to MUSD students, teachers and parents is legendary and exemplifies the mission of public education.
As Superintendent, Mr. Pell opened the new Applied Technology Center (ATC), a comprehensive high school that links college-focused instruction with state of the art technical training. It provides students with challenging academic components to prepare students for success in California’s community colleges and universities, as well as in apprenticeships and other postsecondary programs. He has also presented a balanced budget through the trying times we have experienced these last four years. He is committed to having an outstanding teacher in each and every classroom to provide a transforming effect on the lives of our 30,000 plus students.