Virginia educator chosen to head Moon Area district

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Moon Area directors have spent most of the past six months searching for someone to take the helm as superintendent. Monday night they made their selection -- Curt Baker, deputy superintendent of Roanoke City Public Schools in Virginia.

The appointment vote was 8-0 with director Jerry Testa absent.

Mr. Baker replaces Donna K. Milanovich, who announced her retirement in May and left the job June 28 after serving six years as superintendent.

The district will not comment on Mr. Baker's salary until he has signed his four-year contract. Additionally, a start date has not yet been determined.

He comes from a primarily urban school district providing instruction for approximately 13,000 students in grades pre-K through 12.

Since 2007, Mr. Baker's scope of responsibility there has included finance, facilities, technology, transportation, food services, athletics/student life, payroll, purchasing, warehouse, human resources and student services.

According to Mr. Baker's resume, the fund balance at the Shenandoah Valley district has increased from $6.6 million in 2007 to $35.5 million today.

Prior to his move to Roanoke, Mr. Baker was chief financial officer of the School District of Lancaster in Pennsylvania.

When he joined Lancaster, the district had a negative fund balance of $3.4 million. During his time there, the district posted an operating surplus every year and finished the 2006-07 year with a $1.9 million fund balance, his biography states.

Sonja Reis, freelance writer:

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