2017-01-01 / Insight

Many changes in school leadership

LAPEER COUNTY — Educational leadership across Lapeer County will have a decidedly different look in the coming year.

All but one of the six major school districts serving the county’s students have new superintendents.

It began in February with Gary Richards announcing his retirement after serving both Imlay City, where he started 20 years ago, and Dryden as superintendent since 2013.

The two school boards opted to go their separate ways rather than try to conduct a joint search to find a successor to meet their needs.

In March, the Dryden Community Schools Board of Education voted to name Mary Finnigan superintendent in addition to being principal of the junior/senior high school of the county’s smallest school district.

About the same time, the Imlay City Community Schools Board of Education tapped Stu Cameron, a 20-year veteran of the district to step up from executive director of curriculum and instruction, to superintendent.

The spring also saw Tom English put in his retirement papers at North Branch Area Schools after 25 years in education, the last six as the district’s superintendent.

North Branch School Board members tapped 16-year veteran of the district Jim Fish to take its top post. Before being named superintendent Fish was North Branch High School’s athletic director/ assistant principal.

LakeVille Community Schools superintendent, Vickie Louma, announced her retirement Oct. 25 after eight years on the job.

The district named Thomas Riutta, a retired educator from Linden, as interim superintendent.

— Phil Foley

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