A look at the Berkeley County Superintendent finalists

Source: BCSD (Dr. Samuel DePaul)
Source: BCSD (Dr. Samuel DePaul)
Source: BCSD (Dr. Jerome Stewart)
Source: BCSD (Dr. Jerome Stewart)

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - The Berkeley County School Board hopes to name a new Superintendent within the coming weeks.

Tuesday night three finalists were announced in the second search for the position.

Brenda Blackburn, Dr. Samuel DePaul, and Dr. Jerome Stewart are in the running for the unclaimed job.

All three have held Superintendent positions for over ten years.

Two of the finalists recently quit from that superintendent position.

Brenda Blackburn started her career as a teacher in Virginia in 1969.

She moved up the ranks becoming a principal at several schools in Florida, later moving into the Superintendent position.

She became superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools in Christiansburg, Virginia in 2010.

Blackburn announced her resignation in April.

In a statement, she said, "After 44 years in education, I seek greater flexibility to pursue other opportunities and interest."

According the Montgomery County school board, Blackburn has committed to stay with the district through September, which means if she is chosen as the new Berkeley County superintendent, she will not be in place for the first few weeks of school.

Dr. Samuel DePaul began his career as a biology and chemistry teacher in Pennsylvania in 1973.

He has held multiple Superintendent positions in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and currently Georgia.

DePaul has been with Colquitt County Schools since July of 2012.

Last year DePaul was named a finalist in the Dougherty County School Superintendent search in Georgia, but he wound up withdrawing his application.

Dr. Jerome Stewart started his career as a wrestling coach in Indiana, later becoming a principal at multiple schools.

He was most recently a Superintendent of Midlothian Independent School District in Texas.

He resigned from his position in November, although it's unknown why.

A report states his resignation came after months of debate, litigation threats and a peaceful protest regarding two religious plaques on the walls of two elementary schools.

Stewart also has his own blog where he considers himself an educator, writer, and sports photographer.

These finalists were narrowed down using the Superintendent survey filled out during the first search.

67-percent of people found that experience as a teacher was important to help fill the position.

The public will also have the chance to meet with each of these candidates next Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night.

Berkeley County has more than 32,000 students in the district attending its 42 schools.

All three candidates' most recent job experience had them working with less than 10,000 students.

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