The Liberty-Benton Local School District Board of Education will take action during the next regularly scheduled meeting on February 20, 2017 at 6:00 pm, in the High School Library to employ Mr. Mark Kowalski as Superintendent of schools, for the 2017 – 2018 school year. A small reception with Mr. Kowalski will immediately follow the meeting. Mr. Kowalski, who will be awarded a three-year contract, is currently the Director of Operations for the Harrison Hills City School District. He will replace Larry Cook, who is serving as Interim Superintendent of Liberty-Benton through July 31, 2017.
The Board of Education has been conducting a search which began in October, 2016. The board received assistance in the process from K-12 Business Consulting. After developing a superintendent profile that was based on information provided by parents, teachers, administrators, support staff, senior citizens/major stake holders and students, the board reviewed twenty-one (21) highly qualified individuals. Interviews with eight semi-finalists were conducted by the board and a community committee on January 24 and January 25, 2017. Four finalists returned for second interviews with the board on February 1 and February 4, 2017. After the interviews the board negotiated a contract with one of the finalists.
Mr. Kowalski has served as the Director of Operations for the Harrison Hills City Schools for the past three and a half years. His experience in the Harrison Hills City School District includes Elementary School Principal, Middle School Principal, High School Assistant Principal/Athletic Director and High School Principal. He taught high school learning disabled students (social studies) in Coshocton City Schools for four years. He also taught social studies in Newcomerstown Exempted Village Schools, Chillicothe City Schools and Morgan Local School District and has athletic coaching experience in basketball, golf, football, baseball and track.
He led Harrison Central High School to an Excellent Rating on the Local Report Card in 2012 as High School Principal. While at Harrison Central High School he collaborated to open a school for at-risk youth called Harrison Central Opportunity School to help students graduate and be successful in life.
Mr. Kowalski is a 1986 graduate of Buckeye West High School in Mount Pleasant, Ohio. He received his Master’s degree from Ashland University in educational administration in 2015 and his Bachelor’s degree in social studies education in 1990 from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In addition to his superintendent license, Mr. Kowalski holds a school business manager license and a vocational education license.
Board President, A.J. Granger spoke for the board and stated, “We believe Mark has the expertise to work with the board, the staff, the students and the community to establish an exemplary vision and direction for our future.”
Mr. Kowalski and his wife, Lisa, currently reside in Cadiz, Ohio and have been married for 25 years. They have a son, Austin, who is a sophomore at Kent State University.