Principal Profile: Doug Humphreys
Get to Know Doug Humphreys
1. What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love watching how the students grow both socially and academically! When the children find their voice they make a remarkable difference in the school community.
2. Who inspires you?
My family inspires me! I learn so much about perseverance and grit through our nightly dinner conversations!
3. What was your first job?
I worked at a fast food restaurant called Bronco Burgers in Littleton.
4. If you had the opportunity to pursue another career, what would you choose?
I have always wanted to be an astronaut. I would love to visit different planets.
5. What's an interest or hobby you have that not a lot of people might not know about you?
I enjoy climbing 14ers with my oldest son. We are on a mission to climb them all before he leaves for college.
6. What's your favorite item on the school lunch menu?
I love the popcorn chicken bowl!
7. Do you have any pets?
We have a Golden Doodle named Gryffin.
8. What was your first car?
My first car was an old Dodge van.
9. What advice would you give to a college graduate who is entering the field of teaching?
I would remind them that building a strong culture full of trust is the most important component to building strong, passionate students.
10. If you could be any superhero, who would you choose to be?
As Bert from Sesame Street once said, "I'm bringing nerdy back." I actually have two from each major comic company: DC- Superman and Marvel – Hulk
Any veteran principal will tell you, one of the secrets to their job is learning how to be in 20 different places all at once. It's no different for Doug Humphreys, principal at Eagle Ridge Elementary in Highlands Ranch for the last nine years, except Doug makes it look easy. While waiting for students from Highlands Ranch High School to arrive for a Highlands Ranch feeder spirit assembly, he finds his schedule full and juggling the different needs of his students, staff and community. Today’s excitement over the assembly buzzes throughout the entire school and only adds an additional element to the day’s work. But you won’t find Doug sitting back and watching. Instead, he leads by example and is standing right alongside his staff, making sure kids are not only getting the important joys out of their day, but are also becoming the best versions of themselves.
“I think we have the most amazing students and they have they come from all walks of life and are all very diverse. We speak some sixteen to twenty different languages in this school and there is a wealth of socioeconomic opportunities because we spread so far out in our boundaries. The parents are phenomenal. I think for me this whole school has always been about how to make kids better and you can see that when you walk inside the door. Everyone works for everybody. It’s all in, all of the time. You can see it everywhere here, people care deeply about each other and only want to see our kids succeed,” says Doug.
Eagle Ridge Elementary uses programs like Leader in Me to integrate leadership principles into elementary school culture and curriculum, providing students with practical character and life skills relevant for today's challenges.
“The goal has always been for kids to own their learning or at least part of it. Through our programs we have been able to help kids grow and take on that ownership. When I first got here I had parents walk in my door and tell me concerns. Now it's the kids. They walk in with a concern, a plan, and are able to say, here’s what I am going to do help. Students created a student mentor group here. They came to me and said, we have a lot of new students here every year, they don’t know everything, or the habits or have many friends. So they created a group, where they teach the kids and pal up with them. That’s just how this school, its students, staff and families are, they want to make everyone better,” says Doug.
As Highlands Ranch High School students begin filing into Eagle Ridge Elementary, Doug greets his old alumni, many by name. “He is just really great. He knows all the students. I mean, he makes an effort. I came here seven years ago and he still knows who I am. That’s so great and it makes me feel really good. He's just a great guy. Very special,” says HRHS senior and Eagle Ridge alumni, Sara Burritt.
Sara says her time at Eagle Ridge made a big impact on the student and person she is today. “It really prepared me. Not just for school, and switching classes and responsibility but how to work with people and just how life works. This is just a great school and Mr. Humphreys does a great job here.”
Doug says, he just wants to see kids grow from their experiences and walk away the best they can be. “We want to see kids make mistakes, then we sit down and talk about it and figure out what we would have done differently, how we grow and learn. We keep a constant focus on ever changing, problem solving and overcoming things. Helping kids believe who they are.”
If you ask any parent or staff member, all will tell you- there is just something different about Eagle Ridge. The community prides itself on its neighborhood school they credit the support they receive from the community, parents and extra volunteers to continue to build and shape the young minds they work to educate every day, only strengthens the village it takes to raise their kids. Doug adds, he and his staff will never change that way of thinking. “This is a home. Eagle Ridge is a home. Each kid is an individual in the academic design and their academic needs to make them successful. We bend over backwards and do whatever it takes to make sure each kids walks out here the best they can be.”