St. Lawrence Central School Superintendent Robert A. Stewart will be retiring after more than 30 years in the education field, and the search to replace him has been narrowed down to one candidate — current middle school Principal Christopher Rose. Bob Beckstead/Watertown Daily Times

BRASHER FALLS — The St. Lawrence Central School District has narrowed its search for a new superintendent down to one candidate and, if he’s appointed by the board, he won’t have far to travel to his new office.

Current middle school Principal Christopher Rose became the lone candidate to replace Robert A. Stewart after a second candidate, Michael Vanyo, accepted another position as assistant superintendent for business and finance at Pocantico Hills Central School District.

St. Lawrence-Lewis Board of Cooperative Educational Services, which is heading the superintendent search, made the announcement on Monday morning.

Board of Education President Seth Belt said the board was comfortable moving forward with one candidate. The board will discuss feedback from district stakeholders and the public prior to an official appointment.

“The board is committed to seeing the hiring process through. We carefully vetted all applicants and selected finalists to present to the community. At this juncture, the Board is confident in proceeding with Mr. Rose as the sole candidate,” he said in a statement.

St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES Superintendent Thomas R. Burns said 12 individuals had applied for the position. Based on qualifications and experience, board of education members interviewed four potential candidates before narrowing the list to Mr. Rose and Mr. Vanyo.

Mr. Rose held a community presentation for stakeholders last Wednesday, and Mr. Vanyo was scheduled to give his community presentation this Wednesday.

Mr. Rose has served as the district’s middle school principal for grades five through eight since 2004. Prior to that, he served as a social studies teacher in the district, as well as co-owner of Austin’s Convenience Store. He holds a BA in education from SUNY Potsdam and an MS in elementary education from SUNY Potsdam.

Mr. Stewart will be retiring effective in January after more than 30 years in the education field. He has served as district superintendent for five years. He was appointed by the district’s board of education in May 2015, and took over on July 8, 2015.

He replaced Paul Harrica, who had served as interim superintendent since January 2015 when former Superintendent Stephan J. Vigliotti Sr. departed for a new job as superintendent of the North Rose-Wolcott Central School District.

In 1992, Mr. Stewart became a physical education teacher and athletic director at Norwood-Norfolk Central School, a position he held for 10 years. He became high school assistant principal in 2001.

After becoming Norwood-Norfolk’s first middle school principal in 2002, he departed the district in 2009 to take over as middle school principal of the Malone Central School District. Mr. Stewart took over as junior/senior high school principal and athletic director in 2012 at Parishville-Hopkinton prior to his arrival at the St. Lawrence Central School District.

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