The Dolores school board has selected four final candidates to assume the district’s superintendent position, and community members are invited to meet the finalists early next week.
During a special meeting last week, the board of education announced the finalists: two of whom herald from Oklahoma, one from Creede, Colorado, and one from the Dolores School District RE-4A itself.
Community members are encouraged to attend a meet-and-greet at 4:30 p.m. Monday in the Dolores High School commons area, the day before the candidates are interviewed by the school board and two stakeholder interview teams on March 26, a few days after the end of spring break.
The board expects to have the new superintendent selected and announced by March 28.
Board members worked with the Colorado Association of School Boards through the superintendent search process, which launched in early January.
The finalists are John Marchino, currently serving as a dean of students and athletic director in Dolores; Silvia McNeely, a school superintendent in Wannette, Oklahoma; Patrick “Tony” O’Brien, a school superintendent in Newcastle, Oklahoma; and Elisabeth Richard, a school superintendent in Creede.
Marchino was hired as the district’s dean of students in July 2018. Previously, he worked in Durango School District 9-R, in charge of the district’s health and wellness program, along with serving as principal of Fort Lewis Mesa Elementary School for six years.
He was also a finalist for the superintendent position in Montezuma-Cortez School District RE-1 back in 2016.
McNeely has worked in Wannette Public Schools for the past 4½ years, serving as superintendent and PK-12 principal since January 2016 and as principal prior to that, according to her LinkedIn profile.
Before that, she worked in Holdenville, Oklahoma, for seven years as a teacher, high school assistant principal, and curriculum director for the local school district, again according to her LinkedIn page.
O’Brien has served as superintendent in Newcastle since June 2012, and prior to that was a superintendent in two other Oklahoma school districts: Frederick Public Schools from 2005-12 and Cheraw Public Schools for two years before that, according to his resume posted online.
And Richard, superintendent in Colorado’s Creede School District, has worked in education for over 30 years, according to the district website, with experience as both an administrator and a classroom teacher. She has also served on the Rural Education Council for the Colorado Department of Education.
The two teams set to interview the finalists consist of staff, community members, parents and a student.
The new superintendent’s contract year will begin July 1.