James J. Ponce, Ed. D

Graduating Thinkers

School Leadership

James J. Ponce, Ed. D

James J. Ponce, Ed. D


Prior to joining Texans Can Academies, Ponce was superintendent of schools for the McAllen, Texas school district. During his tenure, McAllen ISD earned numerous state and national accolades including the National 2015 Blue Ribbon Award; State Finalist for the 2013 H-E-B Excellence in Education District Award; National 2015 Distinguished Budget Presentation Award (only one in Texas and one of 10 in the U.S.); Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting (five consecutive years); and the Leadership Circle Platinum Seal Award and Gold Seal Award for financial transparency (three consecutive years) which is the Texas Comptroller’s highest category in financial reporting.

While with the McAllen school district, Ponce was honored as a Top Five State Finalist in the 2013 Texas Association of Superintendents’ State of Texas Superintendent of the Year award. Before becoming a superintendent he held positions as a teacher, principal, area superintendent and deputy chief of staff in the Dallas Independent School District.

Ponce’s past community involvement includes serving in numerous roles with the McAllen Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, RGV Linking Economic and Academic Development Board of Directors, United Way of South Texas Board of Directors, McAllen Education Foundation Board of Directors and RGV Focus-Collective Impact Leadership Team.

A three-time graduate from the University of Texas in Austin, he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration-Finance degree and in Management in December 1990, his Master’s in Educational Administration in December 1998, and his Doctorate in Educational Administration in May 2009. He and his wife, Katherine, have three sons.


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