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Bemidji School District's Hess is semifinalist for Duluth superintendent

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James Hess, superintendent of the Bemidji School District, was named one of six semifinalists for the same position in Duluth.

The Duluth School Board unanimously approved the recommendations from the search committee School Exec Connect, whittling a field of 32 down to six.

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Hess will be interviewed for the position at 5 p.m. Wednesday. He has a doctor of education degree from the University of Northern Colorado and has been Bemidji's superintendent since July 1, 2004.

The six candidates, including one internal contender and two from the region, will be interviewed Tuesday and Wednesday, with two or three finalists chosen Wednesday night.

Other semifinalists for the district's leadership position, which oversees 2,200 full- and part-time employees, 8,800 students and an $87 million general fund are:

E Bill Gronseth, assistant superintendent of the Duluth school district

E Stan Mack, executive director of the Minnesota Board of School Administrators in Roseville.

E Jamie Skjeveland, superintendent of the Crosby-Ironton school district.

E Janet Mohr, director of Northeast Metro Intermediate school district in White Bear Lake.

E I.V. Foster, superintendent of the Prairie-Hills K-8 school district in Markham, Ill.

The Duluth community gave more feedback than the recruiting firm typically gets, said Ken Dragseth, a partner with the firm. Of the 25 completed applications, (seven applicants didn't finish the process) nine came from Minnesota residents, and most were from the Midwest.

Finalist interviews are set for April 27-29, depending on the number of candidates chosen. The board is expected to act on the new superintendent's contract May 17.

Superintendent Keith Dixon retires June 30 after six years with the district.

The Duluth News Tribune and the Bemidji Pioneer are both owned by Forum Communications. Co.

James Hess, superintendent of the Bemidji School District, was named one of six semifinalists for the same position in Duluth.

The Duluth School Board unanimously approved the recommendations from the search committee School Exec Connect, whittling a field of 32 down to six.

Hess will be interviewed for the position at 5 p.m. Wednesday. He has a doctor of education degree from the University of Northern Colorado and has been Bemidji's superintendent since July 1, 2004.

The six candidates, including one internal contender and two from the region, will be interviewed Tuesday and Wednesday, with two or three finalists chosen Wednesday night.

Other semifinalists for the district's leadership position, which oversees 2,200 full- and part-time employees, 8,800 students and an $87 million general fund are:

- Bill Gronseth, assistant superintendent of the Duluth school district

- Stan Mack, executive director of the Minnesota Board of School Administrators in Roseville.

- Jamie Skjeveland, superintendent of the Crosby-Ironton school district.

- Janet Mohr, director of Northeast Metro Intermediate school district in White Bear Lake.

- I.V. Foster, superintendent of the Prairie-Hills K-8 school district in Markham, Ill.

The Duluth community gave more feedback than the recruiting firm typically gets, said Ken Dragseth, a partner with the firm. Of the 25 completed applications, (seven applicants didn't finish the process) nine came from Minnesota residents, and most were from the Midwest.

Finalist interviews are set for April 27-29, depending on the number of candidates chosen. The board is expected to act on the new superintendent's contract May 17.

Superintendent Keith Dixon retires June 30 after six years with the district.

The Duluth News Tribune and the Bemidji Pioneer are both owned by Forum Communications. Co.

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