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George Vanderzell

Vanderzell Retiring

By Jeanne Sager
GRAHAMSVILLE — October 1, 2002 – George Vanderzell is looking to carry out his dreams.
The Tri-Valley Central School District superintendent announced last week that he will be leaving the school system in 2004, retiring at age 55.
Originally from the Buffalo area, Vanderzell moved to Grahamsville 13 1/2 years ago to take over as assistant superintendent of the Tri-Valley district with the understanding that he would assume the helm a year later upon the retirement of the superintendent.
In the past, the board of education has always hired a new superintendent at least a year before the old administrator was scheduled to depart, giving the successor a chance to familiarize themselves with the district and the community.
Vanderzell announced his retirement early in order to allow the board the chance to repeat that procedure this year.
“It gives them a chance to learn the ropes,” he noted.
By the time Vanderzell’s tenure in the district is complete, he will have 15 years in Tri-Valley schools.
“It’s really been basically my career goal since I entered teaching to retire at 55, and I see no reason to change that,” he explained. “I don’t have any specific plans after that, but I certainly won’t be sitting at home.”
The district’s next step, Vanderzell noted, is to decide if his successor will come from inside the district or whether they will need to advertise for a superintendent to start July 1, 2003.

Liberty's Howard
Moving Elsewhere

By Jeanne Sager
LIBERTY — October 1, 2002 – Liberty’s school district has a new man at the helm.
When Superintendent Dr. Brian Howard departs Oct. 15 to join the staff at the Queensbury Free District, Assistant Superintendent for Business Ed Rhine will step in on an interim basis to keep the district in check.
Rhine came to Liberty in January to help solve a financial crisis in the district, just two weeks after retiring from another district.
According to Howard, he is expected to stay on as superintendent until late spring when another candidate is hired to run the school system.
“In the past when we’ve advertised, we haven’t had a lot of response or had a pool with very little talent,” Howard noted. “And we needed an experienced veteran to help us out.”
Rhine was the perfect choice, according to Board of Education President Dr. Phillip Olsen, because of his knowledge of the school system.
“He’s quite familiar with both our instructional programs and especially with the financial aspects of the district, and it was important that we continue that,” he explained.
The district is expected to first seek out a replacement for Rhine in the business department, an administrator whom he will work closely with to put Liberty’s financial plans back on track.
Then, Howard explained, they will choose a new superintendent who will likely join the district in the springtime and get some help from Rhine in learning the ropes. The superintendent’s successor would likely join the district July 1.
Howard will be leaving Liberty during the Columbus Day holiday – his final day will likely be Friday, Oct. 11, and Rhine will take over when school resumes on Tuesday, Oct. 15.
Howard said that despite rumors that he is leaving because of the district’s financial crunch or any other problems in Liberty, his departure is entirely related to the future.
“I’m leaving because I have found a wonderful opportunity,” he explained.
In the meantime, Howard and the board of education are confident they’ve found a competent successor for Howard to finish out the school year.

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