Elida Municipal Schools Superintendent Jim Daugherty will be the first candidate of four vying for retiring Portales Superintendent Randy Fowler's seat to meet with the public.
The first in a series of meet-and-greets with superintendent candidates is May 8 in the administration building.
In an effort to receive public and parent input, the Board of Education of Portales schools is holding meet-and-greets with the four finalists prior to interviewing them and making its decision. Board President Alan Garrett said the board hopes to make a decision no later than June.
Henry Montano, director of federal programs for Portales schools, will follow Daugherty's meet-and-greet on May 9. David Van Wettering, director of instruction for Portales schools, and Ted Trice, current superintendent of Grady schools, are the other two candidates and are set to meet with the public May 14 and May 15, respectively.
Daugherty says he's coming up on his 25th year working in education, a career that has given him the opportunity to wear multiple hats among the Elida, Portales and Floyd school districts.
"I've lived in this area all of my life," Daugherty said.
In addition to his agricultural education background, Daugherty said serving as Elida's superintendent provides him with hands on experience and a background he can bring to Portales.
"Basically I'm involved with every aspect of the administrative work here in Elida," Daugherty said.
Daugherty said his duties include overseeing transportation, technology, special education and submitting the district's budget.
"I work in a good district now with great students and staff and I know Portales also has great students and staff," Daugherty said. "So I just appreciate the opportunity to serve as the superintendent of a larger district such as Portales and would like to help the district continue to be successful."
Montano has also had a long career in education and has served in the school districts of Portales and Clovis. Of the 17 years he's dedicated to education, he's been the director of federal programs for Portales for three.
"I feel I'm a natural born teacher," Montano said. "The people that have guided me in life have been teachers and they've led me right into the field."
Although he sees working with Portales schools as an advantage, he credits his entire career and its experiences for why he's qualified for the job.
"I've had the opportunity to work with kids, parents and the community," Montano said.
Montano feels being born and raised in Portales is one of the main reasons why he wants to see the district grow.
"I have strong roots here in this community and I definitely have its best interests at heart," Montano said. "Children should be the main focus of all decisions made. That's what we do here and we have a great team."