This is a formal portrait of Dr. Shelly Severson

Shelly Severson, Ed. D.
Superintendent of Schools


Dr. Severson began her teaching career teaching elementary general music and middle school vocal music in the School District of Black River Falls.  She worked for two years as an assistant principal in a neighboring district before returning to the SDBRF as an elementary principal, where she served for 11 years.  In 2013 Dr. Severson was hired as the district administrator in this fine community.

Dr. Severson’s education includes a bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Silver Lake College, a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Marion University, and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from Edgewood College.

Dr. Severson is an active member of our community and currently serves as a trustee of Black River Area Foundation, a member of the Black River Memorial Hospital Board of Directors, the Library Board of Directors, as well as the local Rotary Club.  Dr. Severson volunteers at many school events and thoroughly enjoys being a Tiger fan!  She and her husband Larry, a Black River Falls alumnus,  have raised their two sons in the Black River Falls community.  Zach is a 2016 graduate of BRFHS, and Abe is a 2018 graduate. 



This is a portrait of Jill Collins.Jill Collins
Director of Business Services



Jill Collins graduated from Winona State University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and minor in Accounting. She  also earned a Master of Science degree in School Business Management from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.  Additionally, Jill has earned a Certified School Risk Management designation.

Jill is a life-long member of the Black River Falls community and has worked for the School District of Black River Falls as bookkeeper from 1994-1998 and as Director of Business Services since 2000.  She has also worked in the Wisconsin Rapids Public School District and the Wilmot Union High School District as the Director of Business Services.  Professionally, Jill has been a director of the Wisconsin Association of School Business Officials (WASBO), a chair for the annual WASBO Fall Conference for seven years, and a committee member of several WASBO committees for over ten years.

Jill volunteers and serves the community in many facets.  She is currently the president of the Black River Falls Athletic Booster Club and keeps the Black River Youth Hockey books in order by providing accounting services.  Previously, Jill served on the Black River Area Child Care Board, the Black River Figure Skating Board and coached youth softball and volleyball for many years.  

Jill enjoys watching ALL Tiger athletics and competes in the adult co-ed volleyball league and in the local women’s golf league.  Jill and her family also enjoy boating on the beautiful Black River and Lake Arbutus, traveling near and far, and spend time snowmobiling in the winter.  Jill is married to Steve, also a Black River alum, and they have two children, Hailey, a 2016 graduate, and Matt, a 2018 graduate.


This is a formal portrait of Stephanie BrueggenStephanie Brueggen
Director of Curriculum and Instruction



Stephanie Brueggen has been happy to call the School District of Black River Falls her home as an educator her entire career. She began her journey in elementary education, teaching kindergarten for five years and fifth grade for two years. She served the district as a Literacy Coach for four years, working with teachers in grades 2-5. In 2013, Stephanie became the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the district. She is very passionate about this wonderful district and is excited for the continued good work to be done. 

Stephanie achieved her bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in Elementary Education, with minors in Early Childhood Education and Spanish. She received her Literacy Coach certificate from the Center for Literacy Collaborative at Cambridge University in Boston, Massachusetts. Additionally, she earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Viterbo University. 

Stephanie and her husband, Tim, own Falls Meat Service in Pigeon Falls, Wisconsin. They have three young children.  Stephanie enjoys canoeing, fishing, gardening, cooking, and spending time with the family. 

This is a portrait of Melanie FloydMelanie Floyd
Forrest Street Early Learning Center



Mrs. Floyd began her career teaching first grade for the Department of Defense - Educational Activity on Fort Benning, GA. Mrs. Floyd and her family returned to Wisconsin in 2013, where she became a special education teacher and later an Emotional Behavioral Disabilities teacher for the Oshkosh Area School District. Mrs. Floyd eventually moved to the Green Bay Area Public School System to become an administrative intern (Assistant Principal) and Site Director of After School Programming. Mrs. Floyd is excited to now serve as the principal of Forrest Street Early Learning Center.

Mrs. Floyd's education includes a bachelor's degree in dual Elementary Education and Special Education from Western Governors University. She earned a Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Western Governors University. Additionally, Mrs. Floyd attained another Master's Degree in Educational Administration from Concordia University, with licensure for Principal and Director of Instruction. She also earned a Master's Degree in Behavior Analysis from Capella University.

Mrs. Floyd and her husband, Mario, reside in Sparta. The Floyd's have three children, Cassandra, Isabella and Andrew. In her free time, Mrs. Floyd enjoys camping, being outdoors, traveling, reading and going to her children's school and sporting events.

This is a portrait of Laura Simonson.Laura Simonson
Red Creek Elementary



Mrs. Simonson began her career teaching grades K, 1, 3, 4, 5 in the School District of Black River Falls in 1995.  After leaving the classroom, she continued at SDBRF for four years as a Reading Recovery teacher and interventionist. She is now beginning her third year as Assistant Principal at Red Creek Elementary.

Mrs. Simonson's education includes a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire with a minor in PreK-3 from the University of Wisconsin-Stout. She received her master’s degree in Professional Development Learning Community from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. She also holds her 316 Reading Teacher license and Principalship license from Viterbo University.

Mrs. Simonson enjoys living in the Black River Falls community. She enjoys attending her students’ and children’s sporting events. She and her husband David have three children. Grace is a 2016 graduate of BRFHS and is attending the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, majoring in Elementary Education. Hunter and Hailey are seniors at BRFHS.

This is a portrait of James Zawacki.James Zawacki 
Assistant Principal
Red Creek Elementary


Mr. Zawacki began his teaching career by teaching fifth grade at Parkview Elementary in Chippewa Falls where he was for three years. After that, he taught 6th and 7th grade at Osseo-Fairchild Middle School for four years.

He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from the University of Wisconsin-Superior and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Viterbo University.

Mr. Zawacki's wife Hailey is a fourth-grade teacher at Osseo-Fairchild Elementary. They have two children: son Jaxon and daughter Croix. He enjoys spending time outdoors with his family and friends. He loves hunting, fishing, camping, farming and sports. Specifically, he enjoys watching the Wisconsin Badgers, Green Bay Packers, and the Milwaukee Brewers. He also officiates high school basketball and had the honor to work two high school state basketball games with one being the Division 2 boys basketball state championship game.


This is a portrait of Dave Roou.Dave Roou
Black River Falls Middle School



Dave Roou was an associate principal at Merrill High School prior to his arrival at BRF Middle School in the summer of 2000.  He earned his undergrad degree in English-Secondary Education, from UW-La Crosse and his Master’s in Ed Administration from Edgewater College in Madison.  Dave and his wife Kris, who is a family nurse practitioner, have four children and reside in Black River Falls. 



This is a portrait of Tom Chambers.Tom Chambers
Black River Falls High School


Black River Falls has been my and my wife's home for twelve years, and we are very proud to call it our hometown. Having served for two years as the assistant principal and now ten more years as principal of the high school, I have come to know many people and places in and around this beautiful and historically and culturally-rich area. We enjoy the river, parks, and trails as well as the other amenities of the town and are grateful to the many, many people who have and continue to make this a great place to raise a family. I am happy to serve the many families who have children in our schools.

Before moving to Black River Falls, I was an assistant principal in Tomah, after having taught German there and in Sparta for a total of five years. My teaching career started with a Fulbright Teaching Scholarship in Neumarkt am Wallersee in Austria followed by two years as an English and American Studies Lecturer at the Martin Luther Universität in Halle/Saale, Germany.

I grew up in suburban southwestern Michigan and rural west central Wisconsin, graduating from high school in Madison in 1984. I earned a B.A. in German with an emphasis in history from St. John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota in 1988.  In 2003, I earned a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Winona State University. In 2015 through Viterbo University's Servant Leadership program in Educational Leadership, I completed and Ed.S. (Education Specialist) degree with superintendent certification. 

I am proud of and honored to serve the dedicated staff at BRFHS. We provide a safe and nurturing learning environment for our students and strive to help them become truly college and career ready by the time they graduate. If you have any questions, ideas or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at 715-284-4324 or

This is a portrait of Chris StalheimChris Stalheim, Ed.S
Assistant Principal
High School


Chris Stalheim has been a member of the community for most of his life. He grew up on a farm in the Hixton area and now resides in rural Black River Falls with his wife Kim and three children. Chris spent 21 years as a middle school science teacher and K-12 technology integrator in a neighboring district before teaching chemistry and physics at BRFHS. He became the high school’s assistant principal in the fall of 2018.

Chris’ educational journey began and ended with Winona State University. In 1994, he earned a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Physical Science Education shortly followed by a Master’s Degree in Professional Development a Learning Community Model. Lastly, in 2004 Chris earned his Specialist’s Degree in Educational Leadership with an emphasis in K-12 Administration.

Chris enjoys Black River’s big-town amenities that come with small-town connections. He is honored to serve as assistant principal in a community that supports the school district so actively. He looks forward to working with community members to enrich and enhance the already great schools of Black River Falls.


This is a portrait of Tammy Keilbasa.Tammy Kielbasa Ed. D.
Director of Pupil Services 


Dr. Kielbasa began her educational career as a special education and regular education teacher in the Menomonee Falls School District for 15 years.  She also served as a reading recovery teacher during her time as a regular education teacher.  She then served as an elementary principal in the Oshkosh Area School District for seven years, an elementary principal in the Peshtigo School District for four years, superintendent of the Washington Island School District for one year and elementary principal and special education director for the Belleville School District for two years.  She is very happy to be in the Black River Falls School District and start her new position as the Director of Pupil Services.

Dr. Kielbasa’s education includes a bachelor’s degree in Special Education and Elementary Education from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, a master’s degree in Administrative Leadership from Cardinal Stritch University and a Doctorate Degree in Educational Leadership from Edgewood College.  Dr. Kielbasa also holds her Director of Curriculum and Instruction and Director of Pupil Services licenses from Edgewood College. Dr. Kielbasa is a life-long learner and loves taking courses to further her understanding and knowledge base.

Dr. Kielbasa is married to Randy Kielbasa.  They will be celebrating 36 amazing years of marriage during the 2017-2018 school year.  They have three grown children and one five-year-old granddaughter that they love spending time with and spoiling as often as possible.

In her free time, Dr. Kielbasa loves to travel.  They spend a lot of time in the Daytona Beach Shores Area of Florida.  Dr. Kielbasa and her husband enjoy deep sea fishing, swimming and sitting on the beach, going to baseball games, and taking walks.  She also enjoys different craft activities in her spare time.      

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