April 21, 2014

Elyria
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Lorain narrows superintendent list to 3

LORAIN — The three finalists to become the new Lorain Schools superintendent are expected to be announced today.

The three were chosen Thursday by Superintendent Search Committee members from among seven semi-finalists.

Each member of the 10-member committee chose three candidates and the three with the most points were selected, according to Mitchell Fallis, a Board of Education member and committee chairman.

The semi-finalists were Jay Ferguson, a Longfellow Middle School math teacher, Aliceson Humphries, Lorain Schools director of professional staff development, James Kalis, Riverside Schools superintendent, Debroah Piotrowski, Xenia Schools superintendent, Stephen Stohla, former Brookfield Schools superintendent, Bruce Thomas, Warren Schools superintendent and Thomas Tucker, Sandusky Schools superintendent.

Piotrowski, Stohla and Tucker were interviewed for about an hour each Thursday.

Piotrowski, who wouldn’t give her age, said she welcomed the challenge of improving a poverty-stricken district on the brink of insolvency.

“I was told by my high school (guidance) counselor that I wasn’t college material and (now) I have my doctorate,” said Piotrowski, who grew up in Toledo. “If I can do it, anybody can do it, and I like to herald that with kids (in) poverty because that’s what I was.”

Stohla, 64, is a 1966 graduate of the former Admiral King High School who retired from Brookfield in 2009.

He previously was superintendent of Alliance Schools and said he put both districts into the black. “The biggest thing is you have to have a marketing plan to keep your kids in the district,” he said.

Ferguson, 56, grew up in Lorain and has worked for Lorain Schools since 1984.

“One way or another, I will retire from Lorain City Schools and I want to leave it healthy,” he said.

Contact Evan Goodenow at 329-7129 or egoodenow@chroniclet.com.