The Asheville City schools have a new superintendent. Dr. Denise Patterson was appointed by the city school board Thursday night. She takes office on July 1st. Patterson is currently the assistant superintendent of Hickory City schools, a post she's had since 2012. Prior to that, she worked in both the Union County and Lincoln County school systems, and taught as an adjunct professor at Gardner-Webb and Wingate Universities. She told reporters her first priority upon taking office is to talk and listen to staff to see what changes have already been done before making any of her own. In a statement, school board members said Patterson's "leadership, experience, and dedication to students" set her apart from the 52 candidates they interviewed for the position.