Deirdra McLaughlin, the Fairfax County Public Schools director of the Office of Budget Services, has been tapped to succeed her boss, H. Charles Woodruff, as the school system's chief financial officer. Woodruff is leaving at the end of the month to accept the same position with the Stafford County school system.
In addition, Nicholas Fischer, the current superintendent of the Christina (Del.) School District, has been selected as the new assistant superintendent of the Department of Instructional Services. The vacancy was created when Nancy Sprague was elevated to the newly created position of chief academic officer after deputy superintendent Alan Leis retired in April.
Both appointments were approved by the School Board Thursday. McLaughlin takes over effective June 1 and will receive a salary of $124,845. Fischer begins July 1 at a salary of $127,341.
MCLAUGHLIN has been with the school system for 17 years, beginning as a budget analyst and then working as a coordinator in the logistics and personnel budget sections from 1988-95; payroll director from 1995-99; and finally as director of budget services since 1999. In addition, she has served as treasurer and trustee of the Educational Employees Supplementary Retirement System of Fairfax County from 1995-99.
"We are delighted Deirdra is going to join our leadership team," said Schools Superintendent Daniel Domenech. He went on to say he was confident McLaughlin will maintain the "quality and tradition" that was set by Woodruff.
As budget director, McLaughlin has received awards for excellence in financial management and reporting from the Public Pensions Coordinating Council and the Government Finance Officers Association.
She earned a M.B.A. with concentration in finance from American University; and is a graduate of Webster College in Missouri, where she earned a bachelor's of arts.
FISCHER is the sitting superintendent of the largest school district in Delaware, which serves 20,200 students in 29 schools and has a staff of 3,000 along with a budget of $190 million.
"It is with great pleasure I introduce and welcome Dr. Fischer," said Domenech Thursday night. "We are fortunate to have recruited Dr. Fischer to our school system."
Before going to Delaware, Fischer was associate commissioner for finance and accountability for the Massachusetts Department of Education, where he oversaw $400 million in state and federal grants and a $6 billion state foundation budget for public schools.
He has also served as a principal with Marvin Trammel and Associates, where he consulted with public and private sector organizations; was superintendent of Waterloo Community Schools in Iowa; and has held positions in Broward County Public Schools and Monroe County Public Schools, both in Florida. He started out as a high-school social studies teacher in Minneapolis and spent two years as an elementary-school principal in Florida.
Fischer earned his Ed.D. and Ed.M. degrees from Harvard University Graduate School of Education in administration, planning and social policy; and earned his bachelor's of science in history from the University of Wisconsin.