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GCS Announces Key Appointments to Superintendent’s Leadership Team 

Nov. 15, 2022 – Guilford County Schools (GCS) announced several personnel updates on Tuesday, including two chief executives and a principal. Guilford County Schools (GCS) appointed Jusmar Maness as chief academic officer and José Oliva as chief of staff at Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting.  


“To be a successful district, our district’s leaders - at every level - need to lead with empathy and focus on the work to create opportunities for every student to thrive. Our leadership team is united in that mission,” said Superintendent Oakley. “Guilford County Schools is a forward thinking school district constantly striving to grow and cultivate leaders who make an impact on education. I look forward to working with these fine leaders as they transition into their new roles, to build on our progress to continued success. Our entire team will always put students first.” 


Jusmar Maness is a bilingual and bicultural leader committed to improving learning and life outcomes for all children. She has served as deputy chief of schools since August 2021 and previously served as a principal supervisor. In these roles, Maness worked collaboratively with school and district leaders to provide high-quality instruction and prepare students to succeed beyond high school. 


Maness started her career as a teacher in Venezuela and later became a teacher in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools before serving as a curriculum facilitator, assistant principal and principal in Guilford County Schools and Asheboro City Schools. Maness was named Piedmont Triad Principal of the Year in 2017. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Universidad de Carabobo, Venezuela, a master’s of school administration degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and is a graduate of the American Association of School Administrator’s Aspiring Superintendent Academy for Latinos/Latina Leaders. 


José Oliva previously served as GCS deputy chief of staff and will become chief of staff, effective immediately. In his former role, Oliva led various public engagement, communication and advocacy efforts to support 21st-century learning and safe schools. Oliva currently serves as the Superintendent’s Transition Team staff liaison and leads Better Together, a series of community conversations to inform the district’s next strategic direction.    


With a broad range of public, private, nonprofit and philanthropic sector experiences, Oliva joined GCS in September 2021. Oliva has served in a number of leadership roles on several local and state boards, including the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, Duke University’s North Carolina Leadership Forum and two advisory councils for the Governor of North Carolina. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from Guilford College and is a proud GCS graduate.  


Felicia Bowser will be the new principal of Frazier Elementary. Bowser is the current assistant principal of Morehead Elementary Expressive Arts Magnet, a position she’s held since 2021. In that role, she manages facilities and transportation for the school and assists with IEP and Section 504 meetings with parents.   


Before coming to Morehead Elementary, Bowser spent four years as assistant principal at Mendenhall Middle, and she was named a finalist for GCS Assistant Principal of the Year in 2021-22. She facilitated restorative justice efforts at the school, provided staff-wide professional development and analyzed student and teacher data.   


Bowser previously served as a program specialist for school improvement support, a reading impact teacher and a curriculum facilitator. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a certification in elementary education from Fisk University, a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and school administration licensure from High Point University.