Brandywine queries two more candidates for superindent’s post

Published 9:21 am Thursday, March 25, 2004

By By JAMES COLLINS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The Brandywine Board of Education continued its search for a superintendent with two more candidate interviews on Wednesday evening.
The candidates interviewed were Dr. Linda Olson, superintendent of Arenac Eastern School District, and Kim Kramer, an assistant superintendent for Plainwell Community Schools.
The interviews marked the third and fourth candidates to be interviewed thus far, with the final two candidates to be interviewed tonight at 6 and 8 p.m.
Olson has worked in the educational field for over 20 years including the last five years as superintendent of Arenac Eastern, a small school district comprised of one building, four administrators, 30 teachers and 396 students.
She has earned her bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from Michigan State University.
Olson said her current district has been experiencing decreases in enrollment and may face consolidation in the near future because it is such a small district.
One of her main attractions to the Brandywine position was working in a larger school system so that she could offer more opportunities to students.
As Arenac Eastern's superintendent, Olson has worked closely with curriculum, building improvements and personnel decisions.
She also served as her district's finance director and said the budget decisions must always reflect the best interest of the students.
When setting the goals for Brandywine, Olson said it is essential to gain input from community members, staff and students.
Olson thinks the best way to effectively assess student performance is to look at student achievement from multiple perspectives.
If she is selected as Brandywine's superintendent, Olson will be dedicated to making the district the best environment possible to prepare students for a changing society.
Kramer has worked in education for 27 years as a teacher, assistant principal, principal and most recently as an assistant superintendent in Plainwell, where he has been for about 15 years.
He earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from Western Michigan University and is currently working on his doctoral degree.
As the assistant superintendent, Kramer has worked as the director of operations for the past five years and before that he spent time directing curriculum and personnel.
He has extensive experience with bond projects in Plainwell as the district has passed two large facility bond issues during his tenure.
Kramer explained that he and his wife like the community and he thinks his skills are a good match for the Brandywine position.
He said being actively involved in the community is a vital role for a superintendent and would be committed to doing this as Brandywine's superintendent.Kramer described his best personal attributes as his collaborative decision making, team building ability and innovative thinking.
He said coupling a solid curriculum with great instruction is the key to having a strong education that will have a lasting effect on students.
For his closing statement, Kramer stood up to address the audience and board to explain why he is a good match for the position and his intention to stay in the Brandywine district.
The final two interviews will take place tonight with Scott Moellenberndt, principal of Edwardsburg Intermediate School, at 6 p.m and David Gray, superintendent of Eaton Rapids Public Schools, at 8 p.m.
The interviews are open to the public and will take place in the Brandywine High School library.