• Superintendent's Contact Information



Degrees and Certifications:

Dr. Ethan Lenker

1717 West Fifth Street
Greenville, NC 27834
(252) 830-4264

  • Carol Rankin

    Administrative Assistant to the Superintendent/Board of Education
    (252) 830-4264

  • Superintendent's Biography

    Dr. Ethan Lenker

    The Pitt County Board of Education appointed Dr. Ethan Lenker as superintendent of Pitt County Schools on July 15, 2013. A little over 11 years later, his efforts have forever changed the landscape of a district that has experienced unparalleled growth, innovation, advancement and success under his leadership.

    Lenker has spent nearly 36 years working in the field of education and ranks as the longest-serving superintendent in the state of North Carolina with 19 years of service. Prior to accepting the PCS post, he spent five years guiding Sampson County Schools and three heading Jones County Schools. He also has experience as a central office director, principal, assistant principal in eastern North Carolina and as a teacher in various Virginia school systems.

    The Board of Education was initially attracted to the breadth and depth of Lenker’s experience following a search process that included 17 candidates from six different states. During the process, the board also carefully considered the information collected during three community forums and more than 1,400 community and staff surveys. Nearly two-thirds of the applicants had superintendent experience, but the board felt that Lenker’s experience, credentials, skills, devotion and record of success would best serve the Pitt County students, staff and community. As it turned out, its opinion was validated for years to follow.

    Lenker has an impressive and well-rounded educational background. He received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics education from Virginia Tech and later returned to obtain his Master of Arts in Education Administration. In 2006, Lenker received his Doctorate of Education from East Carolina University. He has also studied at the University of Virginia, Virginia Highlands Community College, and North Carolina State University.

    During his prestigious career, Lenker has often been recognized for his scholarship and leadership. He is a published scholar and has been asked to present or speak as part of a panel at many national education conferences. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the following:

    • 2002 Jones County Principal of the Year;
    • 2012 Southeast Regional Education Services Alliance Superintendent of the Year (SERESA);
    • 2015 North Carolina Association of Educators Superintendent of the Year;
    • 2017 North Carolina School Superintendents Association Dr. Brad Sneeden Leadership Award;
    • 2018 Central Carolina Regional Education Services Alliance (CCRESA) Superintendent of the Year finalist;
    • 2019 Northeast Regional Education Services Alliance (NERESA) Superintendent of the Year finalist;
    • 2022 Northeast Regional Education Services Alliance (NERESA) Superintendent of the Year finalist;
    • 2023 North Carolina Association of School Administrators’ (NCASA) Raymond Sarbaugh Leadership Award;
    • 2023 Greenville, North Carolina Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year Award.

    During his PCS tenure, Lenker implemented many successful programs and initiatives that have enabled the district to provide innovative opportunities and support for students, and professional leadership development for staff. Some of the more notable accomplishments include:

    • Creation of Advanced Teaching Roles at the Kathy Taft Center;
    • Two (2) Early College High Schools;
    • Numerous STEM labs, including three (3) North Carolina STEM Schools of Distinction;
    • Expansion to 25 AVID Schools;
    • Pitt County Virtual Academy;
    • Three (3) Dual Language Immersion Programs;
    • Creation of a Technical Academy with Pitt Community College;
    • Multiple Thematic Schools;
    • Various federal grants totaling over $22 million;
    • Oversight of multiple national and state-recognized Award-Winning Schools;
    • Graduation rate reached a high of 86.7%;
    • Provided leadership for renovations at Chicod, C.M. Eppes Middle School and A.G. Cox Middle School;
    • Maintained in-person instruction for students in addition to providing Pitt County Virtual Academy during the height of COVID-19 pandemic in the 2020-2021 school year.

    Lenker is regarded as an open and responsive leader who is a good communicator and collaborator. He has been described as a visionary and a tireless worker who is deeply committed to his work, his staff and his students. He loves to be out in the schools daily, actively monitoring success and affecting change.

    Lenker and his wife Alice have two daughters - Eleanor and Alexandra.


Last Modified on April 11, 2024