Sonia Ruiz – Principal at Lincoln Middle School in Berwyn North School District 98

Sonia Ruiz is the new Principal at Lincoln Middle School in Berwyn North School District 98. Sonia is a proud Latina Leader that has dedicated her life in serving others.  She was born in Durango, Mexico and knows the struggles that come with being an immigrant in a foreign land. She dedicates her work and her triumphs to her parents who risked everything to give her an opportunity at a better life. Schools under her leadership have seen remarkable improvements in student achievement, in teacher collective efficacy, and a culture and climate due to her unwavering belief in the potential of teachers and students. She has demonstrated tremendous leadership to ensure a positive and safe school environment for all students and staff members. As a result of her contributions to the profession, she was named Assistant Principal of the 2020-2021 School Year in Lake County.

Sonia has served on numerous committees. Currently, she is a member of Illinois Principal Association (IPA) Diversity and Equity Committee, IPA’s Legislative Committee, and the State of Illinois’ Inclusive American History Commission. She served as Lake County’s Region IPA Diversity and Equity Co-Chair. She is part of the AASA Aspiring Superintendents Academy for Latina and Latino Leaders.

Sonia earned her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago. While at the University of Illinois, she founded Gamma Phi Omega, a Latina Sorority to provide a space where women can support each other to accomplish their goals while at the university. She also earned a master’s degree in School Social Work from the University of Illinois at Chicago and another master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Concordia University. Sonia is currently pursuing her Ph.D. with a focus on Leadership, Equity, and Inquiry from Illinois State University in which she serves as co-captain to her cohort and hopes that she can do more for our underrepresented communities.

Sonia’s words of wisdom are to know who you are, know your value, and your why. There is only one you. Although you might not realize it, it is those experiences that you have gone through that can be an inspiration to others around you.