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School Board Announces Superintendent Finalist

School board names Dr. Gustavo Balderas as top candidate

March 12, 2015 — The Eugene School Board has named Dr. Gustavo Balderas as their top candidate to become the next superintendent of Eugene School District 4J.

The chair of the board of directors has announced that the board is moving forward with a single finalist candidate and that the board’s negotiating team is beginning discussions with Dr. Balderas about the terms and conditions of a contract.

“We are fortunate to have had exceptional candidates who are all outstanding educators and leaders. The strength of our candidate pool made it challenging to narrow it to a single finalist,” said board chair Jim Torrey. “Each of the three finalists who visited Eugene last week has strong ties to Oregon, great educational expertise, and a good understanding of Eugene and 4J.”

4J_SuperSearch_Finalists_Balderas“We identified Dr. Balderas as the candidate to move forward because we believe he is both an outstanding educational leader and an excellent fit for Eugene,” Torrey said. “Dr. Balderas is a man of integrity in words and actions. He is thoughtful and committed to education. He values relationships, connects with people and understands the importance of equity and inclusion. He listened and really heard what our community was saying they wanted in a new superintendent. And, he really wants to be in Eugene for the long term. We are lucky to have a candidate of his caliber for our superintendent position.”

Dr. Balderas will succeed Dr. Sheldon (Shelley) Berman, who announced last year that this would be his final year with the district. In his announcement, Torrey thanked Dr. Berman for his time, efforts and service to the children and families in 4J and for making this a good transition year.

Torrey also thanked staff and community members who have participated in the search process. “Every person who contributed their thoughts had an important part in getting us to this point. We sincerely appreciate the community’s engagement in this process,” Torrey said. “From completing the initial survey on what we should be looking for in a superintendent, to attending forums with the candidates, to giving feedback throughout this process, the community has given valuable input to guide us as we move toward selecting the district’s next superintendent.”

The board will move forward with a background check process and contract negotiations with Dr. Balderas in the days to come. The board expects to vote on whether to make a formal offer of employment to Dr. Balderas at an upcoming board meeting.

Learn more

About the finalist, Dr. Balderas
About the search process

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