The Wellesley School Committee named its pick for the districtís new Superintendent Tuesday night, voting unanimously to enter contract negotiations with David Lussier of Texas.
After Tuesday's meeting, the school committee said that Lussier had tentatively accepted the position. He would step into the spot being vacated at the end of the school year by Superintendent Bella Wong, who announced her resignation last November.
Lussier has ties to Massachusetts, having begun his career as a high school social studies teacher in the Bay State and winning Massachusetts Teacher of the Year for 1999-2000.
He is currently executive director of the Office of Educator Quality for the Austin Independent School District in Texas. He has also served as an associate director of Domestic Policy in the White House. Lussier received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, a Masters degree from Boston University and a Masters degree and a doctorate in education from Harvard University.
Lussier beat out finalist Judith Paolucci, who is the superintendent of the Yarmouth School Department in Maine. The salary for the new superintendent has not yet been established, said School Committee chairwoman Suzy Littlefield. According to the superintendent's office, Wong's salary this year is $178,073.
The new superintendent would be taking over at a time of controversy and change in the town's school system.
This week, the former business manager of the school system filed suit, alleging that Wong and Littlefield used her as a scapegoat for problems in the business office.
The problems began last spring, when it was discovered that the business office had failed to collect about $169,000 in school lunch fees.
Earlier this year, Wellesley students said farewell to their old high school and walked into a new $115 million Wellesley High School.