Here are the two finalists for Portland’s school superintendent position

The Portland Public Schools announced this morning the two finalists to replace superintendent Emmanuel Caulk, who announced last June he was leaving Portland after three years to take a top school job in Kentucky.

In the interim, veteran Maine educator Jeanne Crocker has held the position while members of the school board and search consultants have looked for a permanent hire.

Although the individual who’s ultimately chosen will negotiate his or her own deal, the district has paid each Crocker and Caulk just less than $140,000 in annual salary for the job.

If you want to see these finalists in person, your chances will come tonight and tomorrow. More on that in a bit. Introductions are in order.

Here are the bios distributed for the two finalists this morning by the Portland Public Schools:

Xavier Botana

Botana has been an associate superintendent for the Michigan City (Indiana) Area Schools since 2010. Botana, who is fluent in Spanish, has held a variety of educational roles. He has been the Chief Academic Officer for the Portland, Oregon Public schools; Chief Officer of Instructional Design and Assessment for the Chicago Public Schools; Division Administrator for the Illinois State Board of Education;
Assistant Director for the Bensenville New American School Project in Bensenville, Ill.; Assistant Principal/Department Chair at Morton High School, Cicero, Ill.; Coordinator of the Illinois Alliance of Essential Schools, Chicago; and a Bilingual/ESL Teacher for the Cicero Public Schools and the Palatine Public Schools in Illinois.
Botana holds a Master’s degree in Educational Administration and has completed some doctoral program coursework.

Teresa A. Lance

Lance currently is a School Leadership Officer (the equivalent of an assistant superintendent), Secondary Schools, in Colorado Springs, Col. She also has held a variety of educational positions. She has been an Adjunct Instructor at Argosy University, Denver, Col.; Senior Turnaround Consultant, American Institutes for Research, Naperville, Ill; Educational Specialist at the MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas; Principal — Community Education Partnership (Grades 6-12), in Houston, Texas; Principal — Harlem Park Middle School  (Grades 6-8), in Baltimore, Md.; Principal — Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts (Grades 9-12), in Baltimore, Md.; Assistant Principal — Walbrook High School, Highland Town Middle School and Thurgood Marshall Middle School (Grades 9-12 and 6-8); Facilitator, Team Leader and Health Educator in Baltimore, Md. Lance is a candidate for a Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership and holds a Master of Science degree in Education/Health Education.

So that’s their quick-draw resumes. Tonight, starting at 7:30 p.m. at Casco Bay High School on Allen Avenue, the public is invited to a forum with Botana. Another forum will be held tomorrow night, also at 7:30 p.m., at King Middle School at which Lance will be the focus.

The search process is down to its final few weeks. According to this morning’s district announcement, the school board hopes to make its decision on which of these two will be offered the job by mid-May. The finalists will make three site visits to local schools and still face a gauntlet of interviews in the meantime, with board members, current administrators, community stakeholders and even students peppering them with questions.

Forty-one people applied for the position, and six were chosen as semifinalists before the field was winnowed to two.

Seth Koenig

About Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.