They shared a few congratulatory remarks, cast two unanimous votes, stood and applauded.
With those actions Thursday, the Ralston school board accepted the resignation of one superintendent and hired a new leader for the 3,000-student school district.
Superintendent Jerry Riibe resigned to accept the chief operations officer position with Building Bright Futures, a local educational philanthropy. Riibe, 55, has led the Ralston district since 2009.
To succeed him, the school board hired the other top finalist in 2009: Mark Adler, the current assistant superintendent for business services.
For the past three years, Adler has taken part in negotiations with staff and attended superintendent meetings with Riibe, said Linda Richards, Ralston school board president.
“He was being prepared for that position,” she said.
Adler, 43, has been an assistant superintendent since 2008. Before that, he was a high school principal in Nebraska City for eight years. He also worked for public schools in Elgin and Petersburg, Neb., and was in the Nebraska Army National Guard for six years.
“I'm going to expect us to serve our students the best we possibly can, and it starts with me,” he said.
Adler and the school board plan to work out a contract during the next few weeks.
As superintendent, Riibe made at least $158,300, including a $7,500 car allowance, according to his contract for the 2010-11 school year.
Richards said that when the board hired Riibe, it decided to try harder to develop leaders within the district. Riibe has taught a monthly leadership class of about 25 teachers and administrators the past three years.
Internal candidates know and understand the district's mission and culture, Richards said. A superintendent search would have cost the district about $20,000 to $30,000, she said, money the board prefers to spend in schools.
“We wanted that continuity,” she said. “We think this is the future — it is for Ralston.”
On July 1, Riibe will replace Rachel Wise at Building Bright Futures. Wise is retiring at the end of June and running for a seat on the Nebraska State Board of Education.
The opportunity to solely focus on helping disadvantaged children led Riibe to take the new job.
“This is a great opportunity to have an impact across the metro area,” he said of Building Bright Futures, which supports educational programming in Douglas and Sarpy Counties.
Before becoming superintendent, Riibe was the district's assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction for six years. He has worked in Nebraska public schools for 32 years altogether.
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