A little more than halfway into Havre High School’s Interim Principal Dennis Murphy’s first year, Havre Public Schools announced Thursday their final four candidates for the permanent replacement.
Monday and Tuesday the district will interview Kipp Lewis, the current assistant principal at Havre High School; Darrin Hannum, principal and assistant superintendent of Box Elder Schools; Craig Mueller, classroom teacher from Naplate, Ill.; and Gary Weitz, high school principal from Colfax, Wash.
The community is invited to meet with the candidates Monday afternoon, from 4 to 5 p.m. in the Havre High School library.
Weitz has been the principal of Colfax High School since 2006. Before that he was a principal in the Pateros School District in Pateros, Wash., from 2003 to 2006. From 2000 to 2003 he was first the athletic director and vice principal for Umatilla High School in Umatilla, Wash., for a year and then assistant principal at Garrison Middle School in Walla Walla, Wash. He started as a social science teacher and football/baseball head coach for McLoughlin High School in Milton-Freewater, Ore.
Mueller has been a social science teacher and football/baseball/soccer coach in Naplate, since 1994. In the past decade he has led several programs, as Independent Study coordinator, Freshmen Mentoring Program coordinator, Freshmen Academy coordinator and Social Science Department chairman.
Hannum started teaching at Blue Sky Schools in Rudyard in 1997 before moving to Havre Public Schools for a year in 2002, where he taught algebra at Havre High School, as well as work with the Students United for New Success program and traffic education. Since 2003, Hannum has worked his way through the Box Elder School District, serving as a high school math teacher from 2003 until he became the middle/high school principal and assistant superintendent in 2009.
Lewis is halfway through his second year as the assistant principal of Havre High School. He started his student teaching, while enrolled at Montana State University, at Columbia Falls High School in 1997. Since then he has taught at Wood River High School in Idaho for a year, Hamilton High School from 1999 to 2004, Sheridan High School from 2004 until 2007 and Ennis High School from 2007 until coming to Havre in 2010.
Former athletic director Murphy has held the principal position since former principal Jerry Vandersloot left Havre to take a job in Wyoming last spring.
Superintendent Andy Carlson said at the time that the school would wait to look for a permanent replacement until late-winter/early-spring, when the best candidates are available.
This morning, Carlson seemed to feel it was worth the wait.
“I’m excited to go through this process and look for the next principal for Havre High,” Carlson said. “I think we’ve got a great candidate pool.”