Reuben Jones returns as new DBHS principal, Petria Gonzales named WHS assistant principal
By Kelli Gile
Walnut–Two veteran educators will soon be coming home to the Walnut Valley Unified School District: Reuben Jones and Petria Gonzales.
Reuben Jones has been named the new principal at Diamond Bar High School.
He brings 20 years of educational experience to his post as the 5th Brahma leader in the school’s 34-year history.
Jones will return to DBHS after being first hired in 1996 as a social science teacher and basketball coach.
He later served for a decade as instructional dean and grade level coordinator at Walnut High School. He also worked as summer school principal for four years.
Prior to working at Walnut High, he was an Academic Counselor at Cal Poly Pomona from 1999-2003.
For the past three years, Jones was assistant principal at Centennial High School in the Corona-Norco Unified School District, where he oversaw the International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement, Science, and Career Technical Education programs.
Jones officially began duties on July 1. During the past several weeks, he spent time meeting with staff members and immersing himself school life.
He expressed hope in maintaining the school’s tradition of excellence and credits its stellar success to the caliber of teaching and wide-range of opportunities offered to the nearly 3,000 students.
“I’m thrilled to be coming back to Walnut Valley as principal of Diamond Bar High School,” said the school chief.
“My excitement to return largely stems from the rich history and meaningful traditions of Brahma culture. We have a legacy of strong relationships, teamwork, and pride in the job we do for our students!”
Jones received his bachelor’s degree at Cal Poly Pomona, master’s degree at Cal State Long Beach, and is currently pursuing a doctoral degree at University of La Verne.
He lives in Walnut with his wife Elisabeth, a Collegewood Elementary teacher, and three children.
Interim principals Denis Paul and Guy Roubian led the school for nine months after the departure of Catherine Real last August.
The Board of Trustees also approved the appointment of Petria Gonzales as assistant principal at Walnut High School on June 15.
Gonzales, a WHS graduate, is very familiar with both the school and community.
She began her career in education 15 years ago as a Language arts teacher.
From there, she returned to Walnut Valley as director of activities for six years at Diamond Bar High School.
For the past five years, she served as assistant principal at Santiago High School in the CNUSD.
Gonzales holds a bachelor’s degree from Cal Poly Pomona and a master’s degree from Grand Canyon University. Her husband, Rich, is a DBHS grade level coordinator.
When she graduated from WHS 20 years ago, Gonzales (then Petria Biller), delivered a welcome address during the commencement ceremony, thanking the Mustang faculty for their dedication to education.
In fact, she predicted that a few members of the Class of 1996 “would be after your jobs!”
Twenty years later, Gonzales is proudly joining the staff as a key administrator.
“I look forward to working with the students, teachers, staff and community, continuing the tradition of excellence and coming home to my alma mater, Walnut High School,” she said.
Gonzales began her new assignment on July 1.