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PRESS RELEASE

August 14, 2007

Tom Butler
(850) 245-0413

State Board of Education Chooses Applicants to Interview for the Commissioner of Education Position

TALLAHASSEE – The State Board of Education (SBE) today voted unanimously to accept seven applicants from a pool of 24 to be interviewed for the Florida Commissioner of Education position. Each of the seven interview candidates was recommended to the SBE by PROACT Search, Inc., after a comprehensive screening process determined that they met board-established position profile/criteria. Although the original applicant pool consisted of 32 candidates, three withdrew their applications and the SBE voted to decline five applications based on untimely submittal of requested materials.

The interview candidates selected by the SBE are as follows:

  • Dr. William Harner
  • Dr. Earl Lennard
  • Dr. Joseph Marinelli
  • Dr. William Moloney
  • Dr. Eric Smith
  • Mr. James Warford
  • Dr. Cheri Pierson Yecke

Interviews between the SBE and the seven candidates will be conducted during the next SBE meeting, scheduled for September 17 and 18 in Tampa, to determine a set of finalists for the position. The SBE is scheduled to select the next Florida Commissioner of Education in the fall of this year.

The SBE hired PROACT Search, Inc., a national executive search firm, at the April board meeting to facilitate identification, screening, interviewing and selection of a candidate matched to Florida’s needs and interests. Throughout the search, interested parties logged onto PROACT’s Web site to view information, such as position requirements, applicant data, applicant search criteria and relevant deadlines. This information will continue to be updated and is available at http://www.proactsearchinc.com/florida/.

The Commissioner of Education serves as the chief educational officer for the state and is responsible for providing full assistance to the State Board of Education in enforcing compliance with the mission and goals of Florida’s seamless preK-20 education system.