After two years as an administrator in Olentangy Schools, Bill Warfield heard a calling.

It was in Whitehall City Schools, where Warfield will take the reins as principal of Whitehall-Yearling High School on Aug. 1.

“I want to be back in a building with kids,” Warfield said. “I miss the energy. When this position came open, I knew it’d be the perfect fit.

Warfield had served three years as principal of Olentangy Liberty High School before stepping into the role of supervisor of curriculum and instruction for Olentangy Schools for the past two years.

Accepting the administrative position at Olentangy Schools was a step toward being a superintendent, Warfield said, “but I wanted to get back to be building principal.”

“I’m excited for the opportunity in Whitehall,” he said. “It’s a great place with a strong tradition.”

The Whitehall school board on April 9 voted 5-0 to approve the recommendation of Superintendent Brian Hamler to hire Warfield as principal of Whitehall-Yearling.

Warfield was selected from among three finalists, said Ty Debevoise, director of marketing and communications for the district.

Warfield’s annual salary will be $118,103, with benefits worth $65,384, Debevoise said.

Warfield, 38, began his career in education as a classroom teacher for Warren City Schools in northeast Ohio, from where he hails, and he was a teacher and assistant principal at Olentangy Liberty before becoming principal and then curriculum supervisor.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Ohio State University, a master’s degree from Concordia University Chicago and has a superintendent’s license from Ashland University.

Warfield and his wife, Kari, live in Grandview Heights.

School board President Mike Adkins said the three finalists, including Whitehall-Yearling acting principal Crystal Johnson and Reynoldsburg City Schools eSTEM Academy principal Scott Bennett, presented the board “with a tough choice.”

“But in the end, with Bill’s experience and knowledge, he seemed to be the right fit for our district,” Adkins said.

The board approved a two-year contract for Warfield and also approved a two-year contract for Johnson as assistant principal.

Both contracts are effective Aug. 1.

Johnson has been acting principal at Whitehall-Yearling since principal Paul Smathers resigned in September, just one month into the current school year, to accept a position of director of safety and community relations for the Groveport Madison Schools.

Johnson was hired as Whitehall-Yearling’s assistant principal in 2018 after she came from Denver Public Schools in Colorado.

After Smathers resigned and Johnson was named acting principal in September, the district hired Tim Barton, a retiree, as an assistant principal for one year to join Austin Taylor as the school’s second assistant principal, Debevoise said.

Beginning the next school year, Taylor and Johnson are expected to be the assistant principals.