The school board voted 6-1 to name Dr. William A. Hunter as Polk County school superintendent effective March 18. School board member Grady McCrickard voted in opposition.
The school board began the search for a new school chief in September after then-superintendent Marvin Williams announced he would retire in November 2012.
The Georgia School Boards Association presented the board with 31 applicants in January. Out of the initial pool, 11 met qualifications defined by the board and five were selected for interview. Hunter was one of two candidates selected by the board for final consideration on Feb. 5.
According to school board chair Jane Holbrooks, Hunter will work closely with the county’s interim superintendent, Ray Hammett, and secretary, Katie Spinks, in the weeks leading up to his new position.
Hunter, who is not currently employed, is a former superintendent of McIntosh and Brantley counties in South Georgia. He resigned from that position in 2012 as part of a mutual separation agreement stemming from a disagreement over a personnel issue, according to Hunter’s resume.
Holbrooks stated she was tasked by the board to double-check reference and credential information.
"The individual the board has decided upon is well rounded, has proven experience as an instructional leader, financial leader, technology leader, servant leader and is someone who is passionate about education," Holbrooks said.
Hunter received his doctor of education degree in educational administration from the University of Arkansas in 1990. He earned an education specialist degree in educational administration in 1975 from Arkansas State and a master of education degree in counselor education from the University of Central Arkansas in 1971. He holds a bachelor of science degree in psychology and science from Central Arkansas.
Hunter has been a member of the Governor’s Education Finance Task Force and a member of Georgia’s School Delegation to Study United Kingdom School Finance.
In addition, he has served on the board of directors for the Georgia Schools Superintendent Association, was a chairperson for the RESA Board of Control and served as president of the Consortium for Adequate School Funding in Georgia.
Hunter previously served on the Georgia School Superintendent Association Legislative Committee and as a past board member of the Georgia Accrediting Commission. He is a former chair of the Department of Educational Leadership Program Review Committee at Valdosta State University.
He also served as associate professor of educational leadership at Valdosta State for many years. Hunter was also vice president of First State Savings Bank in Mountain Home Arkansas in 1985 through 1987.