School board names 4 superintendent candidates

Twenty-six people applied to be the next superintendent of Rochester Community Schools. Four of them will be interviewed by the board of education over two nights starting Jan. 7.

The four candidates were recommended by the district’s superintendent search consultant, School Exec Connect, which has already interviewed all 26 applicants. The four are:

Robert A. Martin, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, West Bloomfield School District.  A Rochester Hills resident, he earned a bachelor of music degree from the University of Michigan, a master of arts in education at Wayne State University, and a Ph. D. at Oakland University. He has previously worked in the Pontiac, Southfield and Oakland Intermediate school districts and taught at Rochester College, OU and Southfield.

David M. Richards, superintendent of the Fraser Public Schools. He earned a bachelor of science at Central Michigan University, a master’s degree in education at Grand Valley State University, and an education specialist degree and Ph. D. at OU. He previously served as a principal in Fraser and was Rochester’s Director of Education Technology and Information Systems from 1995 to 2005. He has taught computer science.

Robert G. Shaner, Executive Director, Instruction and Technology, Warren Consolidate School District. He earned a bachelor of arts in political science and history at the University of Detroit, a master’s in education at CMU, an education specialist degree at WSU and a Ph. D at OU. His previous experience includes being a principal, a crisis coordinator, a Troy police detective and a Marine captain.

Cindy Webber, superintendent of Durand Area Schools. She earned a bachelor of science in business education from CMU, a master of arts in occupational education from the University of Michigan, an education specialist from CMU and a Ph. D from Michigan State University. She previously worked as an assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction, technology and human resources in Shorham, New York and an assistant superintendent of secondary education in Liverpool, New York. She has taught in Michigan in Vassar and Marlette.

The candidates’ application packets are posted on the district’s homepage. The dates for the first round of interviews have been changed from what was initially announced; they are now scheduled for Jan. 7 and 9 at 7 p.m. in the administration building’s Harrison Room.

After the interviews, the board expects to narrow the field to two finalists and then visit their districts the week of January 14. On Jan. 22, the finalists will spend the day in the district and meet the community from 7-8:30 p.m. in the Harrison Room.

Final interviews are scheduled for January 22-23. The board expects to select its next superintendent January 24 and then begin contract negotiations.

The successful candidate will replace Frederick Clarke, who left after one year on the job. Clarke said in a subsequent job application that he found himself in an uncomfortable position due to privatization and the resulting layoff of staff as the district negotiated rough financial waters.

Tresa Zumsteg was hired as interim superintendent until a new superintendent can be found. She is the retired deputy superintendent of the Oakland Intermediate School District.

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