After 30 years as an educator in the Lake of the Woods School District, Brian Novak decided it was time for something different. He began his search a number of years ago, but said his new school district had to be just the right one.

The right one finally came along.

A couple of months ago, Novak joined the staff of the Brandon-Evansville School District. He is now the principal for grades K-1 and 6-12 at the Brandon campus.

In his previous district, Novak held many different positions, with the last being the high school principal. Over the years, he had also served as a history and geography teacher, media specialist, graphic design and technology teacher and the activities director. In addition, he has coached basketball, football and track, and he even directed three musicals at the Lake of the Woods School District.

Novak said his wife, Stacy, had recently taken a trip down to Morris and loved the rolling hills she saw along the way and so when the job in the B-E district opened up, Novak decided to give it a shot.

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They decided that moving to the lakes area was the change they were looking for.

Because the job opened up during the coronavirus pandemic, Novak did his interviewing all through Zoom, a video conferencing program. When he received word that he got the job, Novak said he was thrilled and was looking forward to his new position in a new district and area.

“When I saw how pretty it was in this area, I felt very much at home,” said Novak. “There are lots of lakes and plenty of recreation.”

Being an educator, which means being a part of kids’ lives, keeps a person young, said Novak. He enjoys going to school every day and helping to shape the lives of the students. He likes the culture of belonging at a school and for students to have a wide variety of experiences. He wants students to enjoy their school experience and to provide them with the opportunities to do that.

Novak plans to work with the student council as an advisor and hopes to become involved in the fine arts programs within the district as well as the arts hold a special place in his heart and is a huge supporter of fine arts within a school district.

In his free time, Novak loves spending time with his family, which includes three sons – Chris, 28; Austin, 26; and Daniel, 21 – along with his 2-year-old granddaughter. And he is looking forward to having a second grandchild very soon.

He loves to play board games and said, “I’ll take all the money in Monopoly!”

When asked if he had any fun facts to share with his new community, Novak smiled, laughed a little and said, “I had a mullet back in 1986.”