April Domine is the new leader of the New Albany-Plain Local School District.

April Domine is the new leader of the New Albany-Plain Local School District.

The school board voted Nov. 22 on the contract for its next superintendent, who is expected to begin work Jan. 1.

School board president Mark Ryan said Domine "clearly rose to the top of a wide and diverse pool of individuals as being the absolute best match for New Albany-Plain Local Schools."

Domine, a Powell resident, is the senior director of performance management and leadership for Battelle for Kids. She was superintendent for Big Walnut Local Schools from July 2006 to March 2009 and was director of continuous improvement and assistant curriculum director for Olentangy Local Schools for six years prior to that. She also has experience as an assistant principal and a teacher.

"Domine is a proven educational leader with a dynamic, vibrant personality and the dual advantage of local and national experience," said board member Natalie Matt. "She brings a compelling combination of theoretical knowledge, academic credentials and real-world performance to New Albany-Plain Local Schools."

Domine told ThisWeek after her Nov. 4 visit to the schools that New Albany is "poised to build upon its excellence and reach for even greater heights through this strong collaboration of all 'stakeholders' and a singular focus on the students."

"Without a doubt, this district has the DNA to become one of the best school systems in the nation," she said.

The selection of Domine is the culmination of a five-month search to replace Steve Castle, who resigned June 8. Board members had told the community over the past several weeks they wanted to announce the new superintendent before Thanksgiving.

The search commenced last summer when Columbus-based SC Search Consultants, hired by the district to facilitate the search, interviewed 80 "stakeholders" and reviewed an online survey with more than 400 respondents to provide the board with information to develop a candidate profile.

A screening committee was chosen to review applications and rsums from recruited candidates. The committee included community members Ted Bernard, Janis Bobb, Shonda Cline, Eloise DiPietra, Tracy Hohman, Jeffery L. Johnson, Erin Karzmer, Shawn McGrath and Craig Mohre.

The district received 13 applications. Of those, Robert Hunt and Kathleen Jenney were interviewed, but neither applicant advanced in the process.

Meanwhile, Search Consultants recruited others to interview for the position and the board narrowed the pool of candidates to two finalists earlier this month. A faculty committee interviewed Domine and Ironton resident Charles Scott Howard on Nov. 4. Howard is superintendent of Chesapeake Exempted Village Schools in southern Ohio.

Search Consultants earned $37,500 for its work, according to minutes from the Aug. 23 board meeting.

Bill Reimer served as interim superintendent during the search process. He earns $705 a day under his contract, which expires Dec. 31.

"The board is most appreciative of Dr. Reimer's thoughtful guidance and leadership during this transition time," Ryan said.