Cherokee School District Superintendent Dr. John Chalstrom is one of four finalists selected for the Storm Lake School District Superintendent's position.
Besides Chalstrom, the other three candidates under consideration for the post are Dr. Carl Turner, Assistant Superintendent at Le Mars; Dr. Irma Brooks, Executive Director of the Decatur, Ill. Area Education Coalition; and Dr. Anne Lundquist, an Education Consultant in Denver, Colo.
Current Storm Lake Superintendent Dr. Paul Tedesco has resigned his post to accept a position with an Area Education Agency in Nebraska.
The four candidates will participate in day-long interviews this week, according to Consultant Les Douma of D&M Consulting Services in Orange City, who is assisting Storm Lake in its search for a Superintendent. According to Douma, the Storm Lake School Board will make its final decision Friday night and Douma will notify the person chosen and a contract will be offered.
The new Storm Lake Superintendent will be paid more than Tedesco's reported $118,000 annual salary, with the Storm Lake School Board last week establishing a salary range of $136,000 to $140,000, depending upon experience. Tedesco's salary has reportedly remained the same for the past three years after he took a voluntary pay freeze due to existing budget constraints confronting most rural Iowa school districts.
Douma reportedly told the Storm Lake School Board that Spencer, with fewer students than Storm Lake, is offering their new Superintendent $142,000. He also said Okoboji recently hired a Superintendent for $123,000, and Alta-Aurelia will pay their new shared Superintendent Lynn Evans $125,000.
According to the Cherokee School District's annual salaries publication, Chalstrom is paid an estimated $112,000.
Douma also told the Storm Lake Board that it needed to stay competitive as candidates applying for the Storm Lake job may also be applying elsewhere. The Storm Lake Board also has decided to offer a two-year contract.
Chalstrom has been at Cherokee since 2005. From 1998-2005 he served as High School Principal at Clear Lake. From 1995-1998 he was Assistant High School Principal at Muscatine, and from 1989-1995 was a teacher and coach at Jefferson-Scranton High School.
Chalstrom received his BA in Social Science from the University of Northern Iowa in 1988, his MS in Education Administration at Drake University in 1995, and his Ph-D in Education at Iowa State University in 2007.
Two years ago, Chalstrom applied for the Superintendent's position at Albert Lea, Minn.