(KXNET) — Devils Lake High School Principal Ryan Hanson has been named the North Dakota High School Principal of the Year by the North Dakota Association of Secondary School Principals (NDASSP).

According to the North Dakota Council of Educational Leaders, each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Department of State Office of Overseas Schools, and the U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity select one middle-level or high school principal to represent their state. From these state winners, three finalists are named as contenders for the National Principal of the Year award.

Hanson has been chosen to represent the Peace Garden State thanks to his incredible work at Devils Lake High School.

Hanson earned his undergraduate degree from Valley City State University in Math Education. He completed his master’s degree at the University of North Dakota in educational leadership.

Upon graduating, he began his career at Center Public Schools as a high school math and science teacher, along with coaching basketball, speech, and golf from 1992-1994. He then moved to Divide County High School in Crosby in 1994 to become a high school math and science teacher until 1998. There he served as the head coach of both the girls’ and boys’ basketball teams while also leading the academic team, the science bowl team, and assisting with science air and academic Olympiad competitions.

Hanson then began his career in Devils Lake in 1998, teaching math and science in both Devils Lake High School and the Alternative High School. He was the head girls’ basketball coach and an assistant and junior high boys’ basketball coach. He spent one year as the Starkweather-Munich girls’ basketball coach as well.

Finally, in 2004, he accepted an offer to lead the Firebird community as the new principal at Devils Lake High School where he has been ever since.