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Press Release

Friday, September 7, 2012

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

State Board of Education Moves Forward with Search for Commissioner of Education

- Board elects Jacksonville businessman Gary Chartrand to serve as board chair -

Tallahassee, Fla., Sept. 7, 2012 - The State Board of Education today moved forward with the search for the next Commissioner of Education approving the candidate profile developed by Ray and Associates. The search firm is conducting a nationwide search for Florida's chief education officer who will be responsible for all aspects of the state's Pre-K-20 education system. The deadline for applications is Sept. 27, 2012.

In other action, the board elected Gary Chartrand to serve as Chair of the State Board of Education after current Chair Kathleen Shanahan announced that she would be stepping down from her leadership position based on the increasing demands of her rapidly growing Florida-based company. Ms. Shanahan began her tenure on the state board in January 2006 and will continue to serve on the board through the end of her term in December 2013.

"My decision to step down as Chair of the State Board of Education was difficult," said Ms. Shanahan. "But in the past year my company has grown from doing business in one state to eight and it is continuing to expand. I believe it is important to have continuity of the same chairperson to guide the search, selection, and transition to the next education commissioner and I am confident that Gary Chartrand will guide Florida ably through this process."

"I want to thank Kathleen Shanahan for her dedicated service to the children of Florida," said State Board Chair Chartrand. "Her vision and commitment to accountability and performance-based quality education for every Florida student will continue to be a guidepost from her member seat."

Appointed to the State Board of Education on May 16, 2011, Gary Chartrand is Executive Chairman of the Board for Acosta, a leading full-service sales and marketing agency based in Jacksonville. He has a record of leadership in his industry and his community and has been particularly committed to making a difference in education. He was instrumental in leading a community effort to bring Teach for America to Jacksonville and provided financial support to KIPP Schools of Jacksonville to open their first school in Florida. He currently serves in numerous leadership positions with local non-profit organizations throughout Duval County, including Chairman of the Jacksonville Public Education Fund and director on the board of the KIPP schools in Jacksonville. More information can be found in his state board profile, Gary Chartrand.