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Robert Brown appointed to Boston Public Schools search committee

12 city leaders selected to help recruit new superintendent

Rev. Gregory S. Groover, BU President Robert A. Brown, and Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino at the news conference announcing the appointment of 12 city leaders to the Boston Public Schools superintendent search committee. Photo by Kalman Zabarsky

Boston University President Robert A. Brown will be one of 12 city leaders coordinating the search for a new superintendent of the Boston Public Schools, Mayor Thomas M. Menino announced on Thursday, December 1.

Boston School Committee Chairperson Elizabeth Reilinger joined the mayor in introducing the committee members, who will help identify and recruit candidates to replace Thomas W. Payzant, the current superintendent. Payzant will retire in June 2006.

The committee selections were revealed in a news conference held at the Metcalf Trustee Center.

“This is really an incredibly fitting venue,” Reilinger said. “Boston University has been a great partner with the Boston Public Schools, and we look forward to growing that partnership even more as we look ahead to improving our educational opportunities for our young people.”

Besides Brown and Reilinger, the search committee members are William L. Boyan, a School Committee member and former John Hancock president; Michele Brooks, a School Committee member and an education consultant; Lisa M. Gonsalves, a University of Massachusetts education professor; Rev. Gregory S. Groover, pastor of the Historic Charles Street AME Church; Cleve Killingsworth, president of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; Yvette Rodriguez, chief operating officer of the community service agency IBA; Klare Shaw, Barr Foundation senior advisor; Richard Stutman, Boston Teachers Union president; communications consultant Mary Tamer; and Brien Wong, a Boston Neighborhood Development engineer.

“The search committee brings a wealth of expertise, insight, and perspective,” said Menino (Hon.’01), who noted that Boston students showed the most significant improvement in math in recent national assessment tests. “I believe our system is on the way to becoming the best in the country. By strengthening the partnerships we have built … we will be able to continue making great progress.”

The search committee will begin the recruitment process this month by holding community meetings, and expects to present finalists to the School Committee by next May.

“This is a perfect thing for BU to be involved in,” Brown said. “A university is only as good as the people who come into it as students, and the Boston Public Schools are an essential ingredient in that.”