On Thursday, John O’Brien was approved to be interim superintendent by the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education.
In a unanimous vote, the board amended and approved O’Brien’s contract to act as interim superintendent from July 1, 2019, t0 June 30, 2020.
“I humbly accept this appointment as Interim Superintendent and am 100 percent committed to work on behalf of the entire Kenai Peninsula community to achieve positive educational outcomes for our students,” Mr. O’Brien said in a press release. “The Board of Education asked me to step up to help our school district through this challenging transition period in our state. I am committed to the students, parents, and staff of this District and will work with everyone to provide a high-quality educational experience for our students through the continued implementation of our five-year strategic plan. We clearly have many difficult choices ahead of us as a District due to the fiscal uncertainty in our state. I am hopeful that by persistently working together we will emerge from this storm stronger, more resilient, and more cohesive.”
O’Brien has been been an educator since 1983 when he began his career as a special education teacher in Maine. He has served as an athletic director, assistant principal, principal and Maine’s Distinguished Educator for Teacher Quality at the Maine Department of Education, according to the release. In 2005, he moved his family to Nikiski to join the school district as the education and instructional leader of Nikiski Middle-High School. In 2011, he left the role of a school principal to serve as the director of secondary education for the district. In 2015, he stepped into his current position of assistant superintendent of instruction. He holds a bachelor’s of science degree in secondary education and a master’s in education in educational leadership.
“I have every confidence that Interim Superintendent John O’Brien is committed to move our District forward through these challenging and demanding times,” school board president Penny Vadla said in a press release. “Superintendent O’Brien will work diligently to ensure our five-year strategic plan and our vision are kept intact; and with the collaborative efforts of the District Leadership team and the Board of Education, the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will continue our commitment to provide a quality educational experience for all KPBSD students.”