Julie Braun Martin enjoys helping new administrators meet the challenge of making learning accessible for every student.
Braun Martin serves the next generation of leaders
October 2, 2023
ACSA Administrators of the Year graphic.
Name: Julie Braun Martin Award: Retired Administrator of the Year ACSA highlights: Member since 1986; Co-Director ACSA Principals Academy, 2013-2022; Region 6 Mentor Program Coordinator; President of Diablo Managers’ Association; ACSA Leadership Coach for Contra Costa County; Board member, Region 6 Retirement Charter.
Since retiring from Mt. Diablo Unified School District in 2015, Julie Braun Martin has remained dedicated to student success through the development of great leaders.
A former site administrator and assistant superintendent of human resources and elementary education, Braun Martin’s experience from 40 years in education is helping to shape the next generation of school leaders. As a director for ACSA’s Principals Academy, Braun Martin provides new and aspiring principals with top experts to speak on the most current information in education, including curriculum, assessment, social-emotional learning, 21st century learning, culture, equity and diversity, ethics and more.
Braun Martin also supports new administrators as a coach in ACSA’s Clear Administrative Credential Program. Using her skills in evocative coaching, she is currently guiding four candidates on their journey to becoming visionary site leaders.
Braun Martin’s leadership has contributed to a strong Region 6 Mentor Program. In addition to pairing mentors with proteges, she also serves as the Region 6 liaison to the state ACSA Commission on Mentoring. Additionally, she serves on the Region 6 Retirement Charter Executive Board advising other board members on details and developments within the state on new programs and support services for ACSA members.
Along with volunteer work for the Assistance League of Diablo Valley and Mt. Diablo Interpretive Association, Braun Martin’s involvement with ACSA has given her an outlet to continue having an impact on her community.
“Julie Braun Martin is one of those quiet leaders who makes a huge difference in others’ lives,” said Leslie Anderson, a local program coordinator in ACSA’s Clear Administrative Credential Program. “We need more Julie’s in the educational world to remind us how important commitment, resourcefulness and leadership is today.”
What is your favorite book or quote on leadership? “Dare to Lead” by Brené Brown and “Trust Matters” by Megan Tschannen-Moran.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given? Don’t take yourself too seriously. Have a sense of humor. Be a good listener.
What is your best strategy for work-life balance? Create an appointment on your calendar to meet with yourself once a week for private reflection and protect that time each week from interruptions.
What are some life hacks you would recommend for a new administrator? Do not worry about having all the answers or knowing the “right” answer, but rather be willing to listen to the question being asked and be willing to explore possible options to address the concern.
What would people be surprised to learn about you? People would be surprised to learn that I am a watercolor artist who has exhibited paintings in shows.
What made you want to become a school administrator? Sharing in the wonder and the laughter and noise of the world with children delights me. Touching their lives and possibly making it better for my having cared about them was important to me. As a school administrator, I believed I could make a positive difference for the students and their families and the community.
Now as a retired administrator, I enjoy coaching the administrators in the field and supporting them, as they successfully deal with the challenges of making learning accessible for every student.
How has ACSA supported you in your career? The ACSA academies were very valuable — human resources, curriculum and the role of the superintendency. They helped me prepare for career opportunities. Attendance at the leadership conferences provided me with information about new initiatives and important trends in education. Networking with other ACSA administrators was a wonderful way to exchange ideas and learn about what other leaders were doing.
How are you prioritizing mental health? In my current work as a coach, I remind the people I work with to try to have some physical activity each day, such as going for a walk or doing stretches at the desk and taking time to eat a snack, so exhaustion does not set in. Just stopping to do deep breathing for a minute can reduce stress. It is also important at the end of the day to list and celebrate what went right, what small steps or actions or interventions took place that day that made a positive difference for students and staff at your site.
2023 Retired Administrator of the Year Julie Braun Martin.