Administrative Team

Kay Zimarino

Ms. Kay Zimarino - Principal
Ext. 102

I have been in the educational field since joining as a lateral entry teacher in 1989.  I began my career in Lenoir County Public Schools as an elementary art teacher for 6 years and high school for 3 years before moving to Croatan High School when it first opened in 1998.  While at Croatan, I taught art for 7 years and moved into an administrative role in 2005.  I was named principal of Croatan August 2016.    


I received both my undergraduate and master’s degrees from East Carolina University. I also earned my National Board Certification while teaching art at Croatan High School.  


My husband and I have two sons, both graduated from Croatan High School.  My oldest graduated from ECU with a degree in Coastal and Environmental Geology. My youngest son graduated from Barton College where he earned two degrees: Business and Sports Management. He played for the Barton golf team throughout his time there.  


I love the Croatan culture of academic excellence and student involvement. We have an outstanding staff and amazing students and it is my privilege to serve as principal.

Maegan Harrison 

Ms. Maegan Harrison - Assistant Principal
Ext. 115

I have wanted to work in education for as long as I can remember. I attended UNC-Wilmington as a Teaching Fellow and graduated with degrees in both English and Secondary Education. I spent the next 8 years teaching English and AP Literature in various classrooms across Eastern North Carolina. I started in New Hanover County at Laney High School as a long-term sub, taught four years at Northside High School in Beaufort County, one year at Washington High School (my alma mater!), and then settled with my husband in Craven County where I taught for three years at Havelock High School while completing my Masters in School Administration at East Carolina University. 


Last year I served as the Assistant Principal of West Craven Middle School and am SO thrilled to make the jump back to the world of high school in my new position at Croatan. I am excited to work alongside a phenomenal admin team, excellent teachers, driven students, and an involved community; I look forward to this year very much! 


My husband Zach is a Marine Biologist and serves as the State's Aquaculture Permit Coordinator for DMF in Morehead City. We are passionate about all things salt water, as is our son Theodore. I also enjoy volunteer opportunities, yoga, and restoring furniture in whatever time not spent on the water or cheering on the Cougars.

Jake McAllister 

Mr. Jake McAllister - Assistant Principal
Ext. 104


Mr. McAllister comes from Clayton, NC, with his wife Deborah, who is a registered nurse. They have three children; Julianne, Troy, Elizabeth, and two energetic German Shepherds, Heidi and Storm. Mr. McAllister holds bachelor and master’s degrees in music education and masters in school administration from East Carolina University. He has served at several schools throughout Johnston County as a teacher and administrator. Mr. McAllister finds himself at home here at Croatan High School, following extensive school administration experiences at the elementary and high school levels in Johnston County.

Mr. McAllister is a veteran of the armed forces. He served for more than a decade in the North Carolina Army National Guard and the United States Army. Mr. McAllister’s Army appointments include serving in the 440th Army Band in Raleigh and as a logistics and operations noncommissioned officer with the Joint Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg, NC. He currently serves as a United States Coast Guard Reserve officer, with assignments including emergency management, southwest border operations, Covid response operations, and facility inspections. 

Bringing more than fifteen years of leadership and education experience, Mr. McAllister is thrilled to be a part of the Cougar family. He is passionate about the opportunity to serve a school and community rich in traditions of excellence.

Welcome to CHS! 

On behalf of our staff, welcome to Croatan High School. We are sincerely honored to play a small, but significant role in your education. It is education that unlocks doors, and we stand ready to help you turn the keys in these locks.

Our school has been acknowledged by the state as a leader, a trendsetter in education. The accolades have been many and frequent; however, we have never lost sight of our mission -- to prepare students to be productive citizens. This is an awe-inspiring challenge, but one we proudly and honorably accept.

Croatan High School is not a place, but an experience. This year, it's important to continue to make your experience the best it can be.  Get involved in the various opportunities and activities that our school offers to maximize your time here. These activities make the high school memories that stay with you forever. Get to know your teachers, coaches, and support staff. We are all here to help you navigate this time in your life.

During your time at Croatan, the standards for academic excellence will be high and without compromise. Your teachers will not accept mediocrity, as this will deter the mission of productive citizenry. Your teachers are driven to provide you with the best possible lessons utilizing the most up-to-date methodology and enhancing instruction with technology. Their challenge to you is simply come to class prepared to learn and prepared for any challenge.

Dig in those Cougar Claws and get ready for another journey of learning, laughing, and living. Enjoy every minute and make every second count.