Principal,  David Raft                    

Contact (734) 401-4201


My name is David Raft,  Principal of Saline High School. I graduated from Saline High School and attended Eastern Michigan University where I received my bachelor’s degree in Business/Marketing Education and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership. I also received a master’s degree in Educational Technology through Michigan State University. I am married to Trisha, a Kindergarten teacher here in Saline and we have two teenage daughters.  

I have been very fortunate in my educational career to have had many experiences.  I spent my  first three years teaching in Indiana before returning to Saline. At Saline I have taught Marketing at the High School; was a Career & Technical Education teacher; coached High School Football and Baseball; was a Driver’s Education Instructor; an Assistant Principal at Heritage School, which at that time was a 5th/6th grade building; and then was named Principal of Harvest Elementary, a brand new school within the district.

I have spent the past 8.5 years as Principal of Saline Middle School, in which I truly enjoyed my time there. I am looking forward to my new experience as Principal of Saline High School.  Whether I am working with seniors, redirecting a 7th grader, or reading with a first grader, I have come to one conclusion:   Kids are kids and they all possess many of the same needs, but we as educators have to understand what those are and tailor them to their developmental stages.

Mr. Raft can be contacted at Saline High School at (734) 401-4200, or via email.

Assistant Principal, Joe Palka        

Contact (734) 401-4204


Mr. Joe Palka is in his fouth full year as Assistant Principal at Saline High School.  Mr. Palka currently also serves as Saline’s Varsity Head Football Coach.  Joe has over seven years of administrative experience, serving previously as Principal or Assistant Principal in both Ohio and Michigan.  Joe also has over 20 years of educational experience serving as a teacher and coach at several high schools and universities including Eastern Michigan University and at Whitmer High School in Toledo, Ohio.  Mr. Palka has his undergraduate degree from Eastern Michigan University and graduate degree from The University of Toledo in Educational Leadership.  Joe is married and has three children--two graduates of  Saline High School.  Mr. Palka is a strong supporter of the educational mission of Saline Schools.  His duties include, 11th and 12th grade discipline, teacher evaluation, attendance, and supervision. 

Assistant Principal, Theresa Stager    
Contact (734) 401-4203

Theresa Stager is an Assistant Principal at Saline High School. Theresa believes that communication is the key to any leadership position, including communication between administration and staff, staff and students, school and parents, and the community. She was active in the creation of the PrincipalPLN podcast, a weekly roundtable discussion between principals around the country that discuss topics which effect administrators and school leaders. Theresa is co-author of "Breaking Out of Isolation: Becoming a Connected School Leader". She is the current Director of the #SAVMP School Administrator Virtual Mentorship Program and is on the Board of Directors for ParentCamp: The Unconference To Build Family, School and Community Partnerships (in conjunction with the United States Department of Education).  
An energetic presenter, Theresa has given sessions at many state, regional and national conferences on social media, innovation, podcasting, and amplifying student voice. She spent 3 years as Principal of St. Mary Catholic School in Rockwood, MI and 8 years teaching high school choir and K-5 general music and band in Anchor Bay Schools in New Baltimore, MI. 
Theresa lives in Ann Arbor, MI with husband Brian and two children who attend school at Harvest Elementary. A cornerstone of her educational philosophy is always putting students first and she is excited to make a positive impact on the Saline community!   For more information on Theresa, please click here.


Athletic Director & Assistant Principal, Kirk Evenson

Contact (734) 401-4211

Kirk Evenson came to Saline in the Spring of 2015 after spending 20 years with Hartland Consolidated Schools.  In Hartland, Kirk served in a variety of positions, all of which helped prepare him for his new role as Assistant Principal and Athletic Director for Saline Area Schools.  With a background as a classroom teacher in HS Biology and as a Football and Baseball Coach, his experiences have prepared him well for this current position in Saline.  In addition, he also served as Hartland's Athletic director for 7 years and helped design and build their new modern high school campus.  Kirk also served as President of the KVC Athletic Conference and eventually helped create the KLAA, the state's largest Division I Athletic Conference.  

Previously, Mr. Evenson served as a High School Principal of an Alternative program.  This small-caring environment was named the School of the Year in 2013 in the state of Michigan.  His experiences with the at-risk population have proven invaluable to future sucess in any educational setting.  Mr. Evenson said making the decision to come to Saline Area Schools was an easy one.  He feels that Saline is the best school district in the state and loves it here. 

Dean of Students, Patti Vaassen             

Contact (734) 401-4260 

Patti is a 2009 graduate of Saline High School. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science with a minor in Business from Adrian College. She then went on to receive her Masters from Eastern Michigan University in Sport Management. Patti has spent the last two years working at Saline Middle School as the Student Success Coordinator and Middle School Athletic Coordinator. While at the middle school, she played a big role in overseeing and monitoring all state mandated testing, helped monitor the needs of all students, and handled discipline. She is excited to see and get to know all the amazing and talented kids we have at Saline High School.


Principal of SWWC, Jody Gielinski             

Contact (734) 401-4371

My name is Jody Gielinski, and I am the Principal/Director of the South and West Washtenaw Consortium (SWWC).  I received my Bachelor of Science from Eastern Michigan University, and Master’s in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University.    I have been with Saline Area Schools, Career & Technical Education with the SWWC for over 30 years; 17 years teaching, and 13 years in administration.  I was a part of developing and growing the Cosmetology program in 1985, and continue to promote Career & Technical Education for the South and West Washtenaw Consortium today. I also am the CEPD Administrator for Career & Technical Education programs of Washtenaw County, which includes Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, Whitmore Lake and SWWC.

Students from Chelsea, Dexter, Lincoln, Manchester, Milan and Saline have the opportunity to enroll in over 18 programs ranging from Automotive Technology to Zoology at the SWWC.