The Northridge Local School District announced today, July 7, that the school board intends to hire Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools’ Scott Schmidt as its next superintendent.

Schmidt, G-J assistant superintendent, said he’s very excited about the new experiences and opportunities he’ll have in Northridge.

“The school community has been very welcoming, and you can tell there is something special about the district, and I look forward to becoming a part of the Viking family,” he said.

The Northridge board is scheduled to take action to hire Schmidt on July 17.

His employment would be effective Aug. 1.

“The district faces a number of critical issues, all of which must be tackled immediately,” said Doug Hart, Northridge board president. “Though everyone we interviewed would have been a fine choice, Mr. Schmidt stood apart as being best suited to take on the multiple tasks at hand.”

Schmidt said he wasn’t looking for other positions, but when the Northridge superintendent vacancy was announced, it caught his attention.

“About a year ago, while sitting at a coffee shop in Alexandria, my wife and I commented that maybe one day we could see ourselves in a school community like Northridge,” he said. “When I saw the opening, I thought why wait.” Schmidt said the position would allow him to use the various skills he has learned at Gahanna.

He said it also would provide an opportunity to be more connected with the community, staff and students.

Upon board approval, Schmidt would receive a three-year contract.

He succeeds Chris Briggs, who’s leaving Northridge to become superintendent of the Pickerington Local School District.

Briggs has served as Northridge superintendent for four years.

Among the 28 applicants who had applied for the post, Schmidt was among the final three that included Brian Blum, Wright Elementary School principal in the Dublin City Schools, and Garilee Ogden, director of curriculum, instruction and professional development in the Groveport Madison Local Schools.

G-J Superintendent Steve Barrett announced Schmidt’s departure to the district July 7.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Scott, and we wish him the very best,” he said. “Scott has been a valuable member of our team — smart, compassionate, knowledgeable and unwavering in his support for our students and families.”

mkuhlman@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekMarla