Board selects Williams as interim super

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The conference room at Los Lunas School's central office was nearly empty July 3, when the Board of Education met to select an interim superintendent.

After close to an hour in executive session, the board unanimously voted to appoint Ron Williams, who, for the past three years, has been assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction, to the position.

Williams has been with the district for more than five years, and came from Truth or Consequences where he was the principal of Hot Springs High School.

"Our focus is to keep us going in the same direction, and right now curriculum is so important in our testing," said Los Lunas Board of Education President Charles Tabet.

The board felt William's background would make it the easiest transition.

"I'm really honored and humbled," Williams said. "I have a lot of great colleagues and there was certainly several sources they could have gone with. I was pleased with the board's selection, and I'm really looking forward to continuing to help move the district forward."

Williams is one of four assistant superintendents in the district. Each one was considered for the interim superintendent position, including Dana Sanders, who oversees personnel, security and safety, athletics and transportation; Brian Baca, who oversees special and alternative education; and Claire Cieremans, the chief financial officer.

Cieremans declined consideration for the position, said Tabet.

"We talked about who we thought would be capable of taking us through this transition as seamlessly as possible," said Tabet. "I think they're all very capable, they're all very knowledgeable, but Ron is in curriculum."

The New Mexico School Board Association is helping the board with the process of finding a new superintendent, and Dan Patterson, with Superintendent Search Services, will give a presentation at a board meeting on July 24.

Plans to put a committee together to handle the search and hiring process is in the works, and the board will accept applications from all around the state as well as within the district.

"We're going to start with statewide first, and if we can't find anyone, then we'll go national," Tabet said. "We would prefer candidates who are familiar with New Mexico communities."

The interim superintendent position was effective immediately, and Williams is currently busy preparing for the new short-term assessment and new standardized tests that will be implemented in the new school year.

He said he is very interested in the permanent superintendent position and will submit an application.

Former Superintendent Bernard Saiz, who retired last week, had been in education for 29 years, 14 of which were with Los Lunas Schools. He had been the superintendent for the past five years.

Saiz said he wants to retire while he still has the energy and vitality to do things, and to spend more time with his family.


-- Email the author at dfox@news-bulletin.com.