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Gutman makes final three in Walled Lake super search

'It's perplexing'

October 06, 2010 - Lake Orion Superintendent Ken Gutman is among the top three finalists in Walled Lake's search for a new superintendent of schools.

Paul DeAngelis, current deputy superintendent for Birmingham Public Schools, and Craig Fiegel, current superintendent for Plymouth-Canton Community Schools, are also in the running, according to Walled Lake's district Web site. A timeline for the super search said the Walled Lake Board of Education was to make their final selection, Wednesday, Sept. 29, though no information had been made public as of Tuesday, Oct. 5.

Walled Lake Consolidated School District officials have not returned The Review's phone calls to comment.

Why is Gutman looking to move? Because of an obligation to family, he told the Lake Orion school board, Sept. 29.

"This is in no way motivated by any unhappiness here in Lake Orion; it's quite the opposite – I really do love it here," he said. "The decision to be a part of this is simply motivated by what I've been telling everyone around me to do in my last 19 years in education, and that is to put family first. No matter what the outcome, I will be happy."

Lake Orion Boardmember Janet Wolverton was the only one on the board who made mention of Gutman's interviews with Walled Lake at their Sept. 29 meeting. She said she was both perplexed by and understanding of his interest in the Walled Lake position.

"I've done a lot of soul searching in the last week and my emotions have run the gamut. In the end, I decided that perception is perception. I believe in reality and the reality I know is life is unpredictable… Sometimes it makes you make decision you thought you'd never make," she said. Wolverton noted she's been very vocal in supporting Gutman in his tenure with the schools and still does not question his daily commitment to the district and its students.

"It's perplexing, a little, but I do not know the full story and because I don't, I can only say that I certainly believe (leaving) would be a disservice to our district at this point, but I wouldn't begrudge (Gutman) making a decision to put family above all," Wolverton said.

Reporter, Lake Orion Review
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