Carter Payne has been selected to serve as the new principal of Los Alamos High School effective July 1.
Payne is a New Mexico native. He taught science and was an assistant principal in Las Cruces before moving to Los Alamos in 2010. Payne taught physics at Los Alamos High School before becoming assistant principal in 2012. He was named principal of the Topper Freshman Academy in 2016.
School Board President Jenny McCumber said, “I am pleased that staff followed a very thoughtful and fair hiring process. We had a strong pool of qualified candidates. Congratulations Mr. Carter Payne!”
Payne said: “When I moved to Los Alamos seven years ago I was excited to be a part of our unique community. I have felt very lucky to be a teacher and an administrator at LAHS, and I’m amazed every day at the diversity of talent, perspective, and energy that is reflected in our students and staff. I’m excited to have been selected as the principal, and I can’t wait to hit the ground running.”
Superintendent Kurt Steinhaus said: “Mr. Payne has an extensive background in education. He is a seasoned teacher and administrator with strong interpersonal skills. Los Alamos High School is a community with solid traditions such as quality staff, high standards, support for a uniquely diverse population, and an uncanny ability to tackle challenging work. I look forward to working with Carter to continue and grow the wonderful traditions at Los Alamos High School.”
Carter Payne followed: “I am energized by the opportunity to use my knowledge and experience to be the chief teacher and chief learner as the Los Alamos High School Principal in this incredible place. I have great appreciation for the academic work that happens at Los Alamos High School. At the same time, I take great satisfaction in being part of the development of the humans in our school. I see our school community as a family – complex, quirky, connected, and protective.”
Payne and his wife Jennifer have two children — Uli, who is finishing his Junior year at a high school in Germany, and Emme who is in preschool.