Molitor is new superintendent


by: Photo By Susan Matheny - Richard Molitor, new superintendent.

   Richard "Rick" Molitor, 41, has been hired as the new superintendent for the 509-J School District.
   "I'm excited about now moving forward with a transition," said interim superintendent Kay Baker, adding, "All year, my goal has been to find someone who could take the district to the next level."
   "I think Rick is a great match for this district and the district is a great match for Rick," she added.
   Contacted by phone, Molitor said 509-J's $3.12 million budget deficit is concerning, but he is ready to tackle the problem.
   At his current school district, Molitor noted, "We had exactly the same predicament two years ago. We had a 10 percent shortfall in the budget and had to turn it around. Having had that experience, I feel, will help me bring some tools to Jefferson County schools."
   Molitor has been the associate superintendent overseeing the fiscal and support services for the Wahluke School District in Mattawa, Wash. Prior to that, he was an intermediate school principal for four years.
   He said Mattawa is a small town of around 3,000 in an agricultural area, and the school district, which has an enrollment of 1,850, is 92 percent Hispanic.
   His wife, Kris, is an elementary principal, and they have two children, son Ricky, 11, and daughter Maddie, 9.
   He said Kris will be taking time off from working to focus on the move and their children's transition into new schools.
   "She's excited about the area, and there are some opportunities that might be open to her," he said, adding they both want to be active members of the community.
   The official start date for Molitor is July 1, but he will be in town earlier for transition meetings with Baker.
   "I'm really excited about this opportunity. I feel I have the tools Madras is looking for," Molitor said.