Tomball ISD Selected to Participate in Holdsworth Leadership Program

AUSTIN – Tomball ISD will partner with The Holdsworth Center, an Austin-based nonprofit, to strengthen its bench of great aspiring principals through a new, 18-month program called the Holdsworth Leadership Collaborative.

Tomball ISD is among the first 14 districts across the state invited to take part in the program, which is designed to help district leaders create systems that ensure a strong pool of aspiring principals who are truly ready to step into the role when a position arises. As demands on schools evolve and heighten, principals must be more prepared to navigate ambiguity and respond to challenges with creativity.

“We are beyond excited to have been selected as one of the few districts to participate in the Holdsworth Leadership Collaborative,” said Tomball ISD Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Martha Salazar-Zamora. “This is an opportunity for Tomball ISD to continue building our leadership pipeline and design and develop systems which support those leaders. The Holdsworth program is built on collaboration and we look forward to learning more and gaining valuable insight during this experience.”   

New principals are often needed each year and finding the right person can make a big difference for students and families. Next to a child’s teacher, a principal has the most impact on their learning, according to recent research

“Because principals influence the working conditions and skill level of every teacher in the building, they have a huge – and often unseen ­– impact on students in the classroom,” said Dr. Lindsay Whorton, president of The Holdsworth Center. “Tomball ISD recognizes this and is committed to ensuring its students benefit from outstanding leadership.”

Over the 18-month program, a team of three – the superintendent and two district leaders – will attend learning sessions at The Holdsworth Center’s Campus on Lake Austin.

They will learn best practices from organizations inside and outside of education that have built high-performing talent management systems, then work to define what great leadership looks like in Tomball ISD. District leaders will then use this definition to design systems and structures to sustain the district’s school leadership pipeline. 

For this inaugural group of districts, The Holdsworth Center will cover the costs of programming, thanks to the generosity of its founder and other philanthropic supporters. Founded by H-E-B Chairman Charles Butt in 2017, the center’s mission is to improve the quality of public education by supporting and developing educational leaders. 

The 14 districts participating in the Holdsworth Leadership Collaborative are Corpus Christi ISD and Mission and Los Fresnos CISDs in South Texas; Conroe, Tomball, Pasadena and La Porte ISDs in Southeast Texas; Eanes, Temple, Waco and College Station ISDs and San Marcos CISD in Central Texas; and Irving and Plano ISDs in North Texas.


Driven by the belief that great leaders can push student achievement levels to new heights, The Holdsworth Center partners with Texas public school districts to help educators become experts at leadership, then grow stronger leaders within their own systems. Founded in 2017 by H-E-B Chairman Charles Butt, the Austin-based nonprofit works with partner districts for five years and makes a deep investment in leaders at both the district and campus levels. For more information, visit

Tomball ISD educates students to become responsible, productive citizens by providing innovative, individually rigorous, and personally valuable educational experiences. Founded in 1908, Tomball ISD now encompasses 83 square miles in northwest Harris County and southwest Montgomery County, and is located approximately 30 miles from downtown Houston. The district currently educates over 20,000 students at 22 campuses.

Published Print