Page 12 THE SAUGUS ADVOCATE – FRIDAY, JANUARY 8, 2021 2020: Year in Photos SECOND HONORABLE MENTION: World War II U.S. Navy veteran Maurice DiBlasi, who is believed to be the town’s oldest living veteran, celebrates his 100th Birthday in July, in front of his home. He clutches the U.S. Navy uniform he wore during World War II and an American flag. (Saugus Advocate photo by Mark E. Vogler) DECEMBER: Here is the last full moon of 2020 as seen through the bare branches of trees outdoors in Saugus on the evening of Dec. 29. (Courtesy photo to The Saugus Advocate by Laura Eisener) HONORABLE MENTION: Karen and John Coburn dress up as Santa’s helpers. Karen, a retired postal worker at the Saugus Post Office, continues the project she began 20 years ago — answering children’s letters to Santa, with some help from her husband. They are joined by the 19-year-old cat, Fluffy. (Saugus Advocate Photo by Mark E. Vogler) Replacing DeRuosi School Supt. search nears starting point; requests for proposal on consultant due next week By Mark E. Vogler he School Committee should be able to officially launch its search to find a replacement for Superintendent T Dr. David DeRuosi, Jr. next week. “The first step is to bring onboard a search agent who will guide us through the search process,” School Committee Vice Chair Ryan Fisher said Wednesday. “We want to do this professionally and aboveboard, and we've asked for quotes to be submitted to the committee by January 11th, at which point we’ll get this search started,” Fisher said. Fischer, who serves as chair of the yet-to-be-named superintendent search panel, said the committee late last year had requested quotes from a handful of agencies that specialize in superintendent job searches. School Committee Member Joseph “Dennis” Gould will serve as vice chair of the search panel. DeRuosi informed the committee in December that he plans to retire next June 30 at the end of his five years as leader of Saugus Public Schools. School Committee members voted unanimously at their December 15 meeting to solicit quotes from search agencies on how they can help the town conduct an effective search process and what it will cost. School Committee Member Arthur Grabowski, who was involved in the search process and the eventual committee vote to hire DeRuosi more than four and a half years ago, stressed that the committee already has somewhat of a blueprint that will guide members in the search and hiring of the next superintendent. Grabowski suggested that the committee work from and revise the same documents which led to hiring of the New England School Development Council – the firm that consulted for a 21-member search committee in a process that eventually led to DeRuosi’s appointment. But because of the nature of recent public meetings being conducted via “Zoom” video conferencing, it is unlikely that the School Committee would select a panel that large, according to Grabowski. He said it cost less than $50,000 to hire a consultant to advise the 2016 search committee. During the meeting, Grabowski asked the School Department’s Executive Director of Finance and Administration, Pola Andrews, to brief the committee on the logistics for hiring a consultant. “If anything is lower than $50,000, you only need three quotes,” Andrews said. “I can’t imagine it being more than $50,000.” Grabowski said he believes the New England School Development Council was hired for an amount “a little north of $40,000.”

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