District hires communications manager for community outreach


Samantha Joseph

Cynthia Rust Greaves was hired to fill the administrative position of MVLA Communications Manager and was introduced at the school board meeting on Feb. 6. Rust Greaves will be responsible for district communications in regards to keeping the student, staff, and parent community informed of district news and events.
The Board of Trustees and Superintendent Jeff Harding extensively discussed and created the position to improve communication with the community, through social media and other outlets.
When asked why the Oracle was not a sufficient means of communication, Principal David Grissom said that the district lacked an “online presence,” and that, “from a district standpoint, there is no social media face at all.”
Rust Greaves formerly worked at Sutter Health, of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation, in a similar role dealing with patient communications. Before Sutter Health, Rust Greaves worked for 10 years with Greenpeace, an international organization focused on environmental campaigns.
“I’ve been in public affairs, press communications, and media relations my entire career,” Rust Greaves said at the meeting. “I’ve done a lot of high profile facilities work and community relations.”
Rust Greaves will begin her work as Communications Manager effective March 1. Moving forward, she plans to collaborate with the school board, teachers, and students to bring a larger social media and communicative face to the district.
The district originally posted the job opening for Communications Manager on Dec. 20, and had since been reaching out to people who primarily served in positions involving communications.
Associate Superintendent Eric Goddard, who manages human resources and personnel, led the outreach and interviews of candidates within a delegated committee.
Goddard then formed a committee to evaluate the large pool of nearly 100 applicants applying for this position.
“We want folks that serve in various roles in the district and who might interact with the candidates applying for this position on a regular basis. We really want to have diverse viewpoints,” Goddard said.
“And for the students, I’m looking forward to working with you guys and I can tell you that, while I’m a [public relations] person, I made a commitment to myself that I would…never take a job that required me to lie and I’ve maintained that for my entire career,” Rust Greaves said. “I hope we can talk and share information and ideas, and have an open channel.”