Search for WSD super is postponed

TEACHER STEPHANIE PERRY in the Innovation Lab with students at Finley Elementary School in Westminster. The Westminster School District has been without a permanent superintendent since October 2017 (Orange County Tribune photo by Jim Tortolano).

A permanent superintendent for the Westminster School District will have to wait until after Election Day in November.

According to Trish Montgomery, spokesperson for the K-8 district, the Board of Trustees decided at its June 14 meeting to continue using interim superintendents until that time. Three interim top educators have served in that post since Cynthia Paik was discharged in October 2017 after being appointed in May of that year.


The current interim leader is David Verdugo, and this assignment will run through the end of June. As of July 1, Juan Lopez will take over until September, and then the reins will go to Gary Rutherford, who had an earlier turn in the position.

According to Montgomery, the reason for the changes and short terms have to do with the allowable annual income for retired educators. “There are all experienced, seasoned, retired superintendents,” she said. “We’ve been in a good hands.”

The school board also agreed to retain Leadership Associates, a firm which specializes in helping school districts find new superintendents.

The WSD serves most of Westminster as well as portions of Garden Grove, Huntington Beach and Midway City.

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