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Originally published Monday, March 7, 2011 at 6:45 PM

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Seattle Public Schools name interim financial officer

Robert Boesche is a school-finance consultant and former finance chief in the Northshore School District.

Seattle Times education reporter

Robert Boesche, a school-finance consultant and former finance chief in the Northshore School District, will be the interim chief financial officer in Seattle Public Schools.

Seattle district leaders announced Monday that Boesche has already started work. The School Board will conduct a national search for a permanent replacement.

Board members said Boesche has the right experience and is highly regarded in Washington state.

"Mr. Boesche was the clear choice for the job, and we look forward to working with him," said Sherry Carr, head of the district's audit and finance committee.

Boesche (Boo-SHAY) replaces Don Kennedy, who lost his job last Wednesday along with Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson. Kennedy served as the district's chief financial officer and chief operations officer.

The district announced earlier that Pegi McEvoy, its director of health and safety, will be interim chief operations officer.

The School Board dismissed Goodloe-Johnson and Kennedy for failing to adequately oversee the district's small-business contracting program, which the state auditor found had $1.8 million in questionable expenses.

Boesche has been an interim chief financial officer in several local school districts since 2001, when he left Northshore. They include Edmonds, Shoreline, Vashon Island and Monroe. Most recently, from June to December of 2010, he worked in the Kent School District. He also has done research into teacher compensation.

He spent 12 years as chief financial officer in Northshore, which has about 19,000 students.

"He's fully aware of the funding challenges that the district faces coming out of Olympia," said Stephen Nielsen, assistant superintendent for financial services at the Puget Sound Educational Service District, a regional organization that supports school districts.

In a prepared release, Boesche said his goal is "to ensure sound financial stewardship so that our district can focus on its primary mission of providing a high-quality education for all 47,000 students that we serve."

Before he was Northshore's chief financial officer, Boesche spent nine years as the district's director of vocational and career education. He worked as a teacher for nine years, too, teaching business marketing classes at Inglemoor High School.

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In 1978, Boesche was named Northshore School District's teacher of the year.

Boesche has a master's in education from the University of Washington, and a bachelor's in education from Central Washington University. He earned a school-principal credential from Western Washington University in 1997 and a superintendent's credential from the University of Washington in 1985.

Linda Shaw: 206-464-2359 or lshaw@seattletimes.com

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