Robbinsdale Area Schools

David Engstrom Selected to Lead Robbinsdale Area Schools as New Superintendent

The School Board of Robbinsdale Area Schools has selected David Engstrom as their preferred candidate to be the district’s next leader.

Mr. Engstrom was one of two finalists the board selected to continue conversations with after interviewing four other leaders this past week. The other finalist was Dr. Kim Hiel, who is the current superintendent of Fridley Public Schools. 

“We had two great finalists to choose from and we are excited to announce that Mr. Engstrom will be the next leader of District 281,” said David Boone, Board Chair. “We are proud to bring Mr. Engstrom back home to Minnesota and to the Robbinsdale Area School District.”

“I also want to say that we’re also grateful for the finalists who spent time interviewing with us earlier this week,” he continued. “Those interviews happened on a very public stage and it meant that those very fine leaders had to be willing to open up their lives during this process. We heard really great things from all of them.”

Tonight’s vote authorizes contract negotiations to begin with Mr. Engstrom. The offer is contingent on contract negotiations between the Board and Mr. Engstrom, with plans to finalize an agreement in the coming days. 

Mr. Engstrom has served for three years as Deputy Superintendent of Achievement, Learning and Leadership of Colorado Spring District 11 in Colorado. Before that, he was a teacher, assistant principal, principal, senior principal, executive director and assistant superintendent for the district.

Before his time in Colorado, Mr. Engstrom taught business and marketing for seven years at Champlin Park High School in the Anoka-Hennepin School District. Prior to beginning a career in education, he worked in marketing and ran a small business. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Broadcast Communications from John Brown University in Arkansas; a Master's Degree in Marketing Education from the University of Minnesota; Career and Technical Education leadership from Colorado State University; and Superintendent and Principal credentials from University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

This past February, the Board began its nationwide search for the district’s next leader. Stakeholders were involved in the process through surveys and focus groups. Final interviews took place April 15-16.

Robbinsdale’s current interim superintendent, Dr. Stephanie Burrage, will continue in her role through the end of the academic year. She assumes her new post as the Deputy Education Commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Education on June 23.

To learn more information about the 2021 Superintendent Search, including the timeline and other previous updates, visit