After previous Principal Byron Darnall quit to take a principal job in Simpson County last month, Potter Gray Elementary School welcomed its new leader during an announcement Tuesday.

Keith Brown, currently principal of Western Elementary School in Ohio County, was welcomed by teachers and district staff during an event at the school. As he addressed those gathered, Brown laid out his vision for the school and his desire to work with parents and teachers along the way.

“I’m excited to move forward in providing an environment where all of our students have the opportunity to achieve their best academic success,” he said. “Each day, our community will strive to make Potter Gray a place where students can not only grow academically, but also feel safe and loved.”

Brown has served as principal of Western Elementary since 2014. His first experience as a school administrator was from 2012 to 2014 during a stint as assistant principal of Beaver Dam Elementary School, also in Ohio County.

From 2005 to 2012, Brown taught music and was a band director in Garrard County Schools, working with students in grades 6 through 12, a news release said. Between 2004 and 2005, he was a K-5 music and physical education teacher at Paint Lick Elementary School.

“Over the course of the principal selection process, it became apparent to the members of the (site-based decision-making) council that Keith Brown was the ideal leader to become the next principal at Potter Gray,” Bowling Green Independent School District Superintendent Gary Fields said in a news release. “His experience, his vision and his commitment to excellence will allow Potter Gray to continue to challenge all students to achieve at high levels.”

During his 15 years in education, Brown has worn many hats.

As an elementary school principal, he is the only administrator in the building and serves as guidance counselor, curriculum coordinator, instructional leader and behavioral specialist, a news release said. While serving as band director, he coached more than 330 students in bands each year, and he’s taught physical education, arts and humanities, general music, concert band and marching band.

Brown graduated from Warren Central High School in 2000 and earned his bachelor’s degree in music education from Transylvania University. He holds a master’s degree in school administration from Eastern Kentucky University.

Brown lives in Bowling Green with his wife, Rachel, and their two children, 5-year-old Anna, and Will, who is 3 months old.

Asked what made Brown stand out as a candidate, Potter Gray special education teacher Steve Dotson, who serves on the school’s SBDM council that selected Brown, said school stakeholders wanted a leader who’s involved in all aspects of school life with effective communication skills.

Dotson said Brown “shined at that,” and said Brown also brings a lot of experience to the job.

“Where he’s at now, he’s kind of a one-man-show … he wears a lot of hats,” Dotson said, adding the council felt Brown “was perfect for the job.”

– Follow education reporter Aaron Mudd on Twitter @BGDN_edbeat or visit


Education reporter. Covers education and related issues, focusing primarily on the Bowling Green and Warren County public school districts and Western Kentucky University.

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