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Board Approves New Treasurer | CFO

Board of Education Announces Cliff Hetzel New Treasurer

Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools is excited and proud to announce Cliff Hetzel as the District’s new Treasurer/Chief Financial Officer.

“I have enjoyed being a leader here at GJPS and I am looking forward to serving our students, staff and community in this new role,” Hetzel said. “As the new CFO, I am committed to protecting the financial interests of the District, maximizing value and working hard to ensure that we continue to be a fiscally responsible District.”

Hetzel is currently the District’s Chief Operating Officer and has served in that role for the past year. He is a proven leader in our District and we are excited to welcome him to this new position.

Before joining GJPS, Hetzel was at Hilliard City Schools, where he served as the Chief Operating Officer since 2014. During his time in Hilliard and with GJPS, he has focused on cost savings, energy efficiency, streamlining processes, supporting operations staff and establishing goals for operational excellence. As an example, Hetzel has evaluated and restructured contracts and services related to our construction program, solar energy and purchased service agreements that have resulted in more than $500,000 in savings for GJPS over the past year alone.

Recently, Hetzel was recognized by the Ohio Association of School Business Officials (OASBO) for his outstanding work and received the 2023 Outstanding Business Operations Manager of the Year award, proving his strong track record of finding savings in construction projects, supporting staff and aligning operations teams with student outcomes.

“Cliff has shown strong strategic vision, integrity and leadership skills during his time with the District,” Board of Education President Kara Coates said. “I look forward to seeing him put his skills toward our treasurer department and continue to improve on our already sound financial standing. As a Board, we are happy to fill this position with someone who already has a strong understanding and commitment to the Gahanna-Jefferson community.”

Hetzel also has a Master of Business Administration from Ashland University and a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management from Ohio State University. In addition, he earned a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt from the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth and has Project Leadership and Business Analytics certifications from Cornell University. Earlier in Hetzel’s career, he served as a Financial Advisor and held both a Series 7 and Series 66 designation from FINRA, and currently holds an Ohio Insurance license for all lines of coverage from the Department of Insurance. During this school year, Hetzel completed graduate coursework in School Law and Finance that complemented his business experience in public schools and enabled him to acquire his School Treasurer’s license.

The District will now begin the process of hiring a new Chief Operating Officer to GJPS. Once that person is selected and transitioned into their new role, Hetzel will move to the CFO position. David Varda will still serve as the District’s interim treasurer until that transition occurs.

Please join us in congratulating Mr. Cliff Hetzel on his new role with GJPS!