Vicki Presser Presses On

VickiPresserVicki Presser, the Public Information Officer, media liaison and the voice of the Scarsdale School District has announced she will retire in June after 18 years on the job.

We asked Presser a few questions about her role, her history and the future and here is what she shared”

What are your current responsibilities?

I write or edit all the articles in Insight, and take the classroom photos that are published there; I gather and edit the articles for 'Dale Dispatch; I send Board meeting notices and news releases out to the news media and the community, and write and distribute Board Highlights; I edit reports and papers written by our District administrators; I write special pieces as needed; I answer community and reporter requests for information; I post items on the District Facebook page and contribute to Website postings; I notify news media concerning inclement weather postings; I take part in Safety, Security, and Emergency Management committee work; and there's probably more things that are not coming to mind just now! Oh right: I help bewildered, lost people in the hallway -- a lot. That just happened, so it reminded me.

How has the job changed during your tenure?

Google Docs is a game-changer, as they say. So much easier to collaborate on drafts and keep track of changes.

Under which superintendents did you serve and how did their communication styles vary?

Just Dr. McGill and Dr. Hagerman.

How has the advent of social media affected the way you communicate with the community?

In 2002 Facebook was barely a thing. Now we have nearly instantaneous access to information. But the same rules of communication apply - be clear, concise, and mindful of community concerns.

Were you ever fooled into reporting a fake story or fake news?

Nope. I'm the one telling people to go to Snopes and check the veracity of a story BEFORE passing it around.

What was one of the funniest stories you ever reported?

Not exactly that, but here's one of my favorite stories: It was Human Rights Day at the Middle School some years ago. I had twisted my ankle badly the day before, but gamely limped around the hallways taking photos -- until principal Mike McDermott stopped me and said, "young lady, I'm sending you to the nurse's office!" Now, that is truly one of the perks of working in a school district.

Down the road, what changes in district communications do you anticipate?

I've already seen the transition from phone calls to emails to texts. But some things never change -- for example, a print newsletter is still the only reliable way to reach everyone living in the community.

Do you think the job description for your replacement will differ from what you currently do?

I'm certain my successor will find new and better ways to get the work done -- and will probably also be able to reach items on top shelves.

What do you plan to do in your retirement?

I was recently elected to the White Plains Common Council, and very much enjoy serving the community where I've lived for nearly 40 years. But another title I got in January is even more exciting -- Grandma! My new granddaughter is in Chicago; regular visits will be in order. Apart from that, I'll be glad to have more time to read, take part in synagogue activities, attend concerts, and visit museums and parks.