Steamboat Springs Kevin Taulman has been selected as the interim principal of Steamboat Springs High School, Superintendent Shalee Cunningham announced Tuesday.
Taulman, the school's former assistant principal, will replace outgoing principal Mike Knezevich, whose contract was not renewed by the Steamboat Springs School Board for the 2008-09 school year.
Cunningham said Taulman's character and integrity were the strongest factors in his selection.
"I'm very impressed by him, he's a good man," Cunningham said. "I very much like that Kevin and his family are entrenched in the community. He is a known entity in the community."
Taulman was informed about the decision during the weekend and spent part of Tuesday moving into his new office. He said the students likely will feel more comfortable because they know him already.
"It will allow the school to have some stability and continuity," he said. "It makes people feel safe."
Taulman served as assistant principal at the building for three years and said he does not intend to make any major changes, preferring instead to focus on creating teams and "bringing teachers back to their roots" of teaching.
When asked about his strengths, he said, "I help people to achieve things they didn't think they could achieve," and listed his listening skills as a major asset.
Taulman does not have a contract. The School Board must approve the decision to hire him at its Aug. 4 meeting.
Board President Robin Crossan said she had not discussed the hire with the other board members and could not speak for the board, but she said she plans to vote for approval.
"I'm hopeful we'll all feel comfortable with the superintendent's recommendation," she said. "I'm pleased, and I will go with the recommendation."
Cunningham said Taulman will fill an interim position because she is new to the district and wanted a chance to get to know Taulman during her first year.
"He will be an interim simply because I'm new to the community, it will give me a chance to know him, a chance for him to be part of the team, and for me to get through one evaluation cycle with him before we evaluate his permanency," Cunningham said.
She said the interim designation probably will last one year or less.
Taulman said he was not concerned about being named to an interim post.
"I'm confident enough in my abilities that it doesn't bother me," he said.
Cunningham began work as the district's new superintendent Thursday and made hiring a principal her first task. The position was advertised in-district only and drew two applicants. Cunningham declined to name the other candidate.
Despite the small applicant pool, Cunningham said Taulman meets national-search standards.
"I've done national searches for high school principals, and he's the type of man I would hire on a national search. We're lucky to have him," she said.
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