A lifelong resident of southern Missouri, Priest grew up in Poplar Bluff area before moving to Doniphan. He and his wife, Marcia, have one son, Joshua, who will be an 8th grader this year at Thayer.
Priest has a bachelor's degree from Arkansas State University, a master's degree from Southeast Missouri State University, and a specialist in education degree from Southeast Missouri State University.
"I am excited to have the opportunity to work with the children, parents and community here in Thayer. I can already tell by the warm welcome and encouragement that I have received that this is a great community and one that I will be proud to be a part," the principal said.
"It is great to move to a community that supports their school like I see here in Thayer. Moving into a new school building is energizing and challenging. I ask for the community's patience and support as we make this adjustment, and I am looking forward to an exciting and rewarding school year," he said.