Monday, February 11, 2013
Nancy Harris Retirement Brings Tributes
By James Lomuscio
Word that Nancy Harris, the Westport school system’s assistant superintendent of business for the past 13 years, will retire effective June 30, has brought regrets and tributes from colleagues.
Nancy Harris: “She will be missed.” Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
The announcement also prompted a posting of the job opening Sunday in The New York Times as well as on the town’s website and employment websites.
“It is with regret that I inform that Nancy Harris, Assistant Superintendent for Business, has elected to retire effective June 30, 2013,” Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon emailed school staff and the Board of Education last week.
“Nancy has served the Westport Public Schools with incredible dedication and commitment for the past 13 years.”
Harris was unable to be reached for this story.
According to Landon, Harris’s responsibilities during her tenure included the Staples High School and Bedford Middle School constructions and “finalizing the construction of Green’s Farms School.”
Landon said Harris was also in charge of “the complete re-outfitting of the old Bedford Middle School to form the new Saugatuck School, directing the Kings Highway School ventilation project, and refurbishing Long Lots School.”
He also credited her with reorganizing the school district’s business office, making it more efficient, and having “significantly improved the School Lunch Program, maintained and improved all our facilities and assisted in the Healthy Schools Project.”
“She will be missed,” said Landon.
Elaine Whitney, school board chairwoman, agreed. “I will miss her,” she said.
“She had many, many responsibilities,” said Whitney. “We are grateful to Nancy for her dedication, professionalism and many contributions to the Westport Public Schools.
“Over the years she has implemented a steady stream of improvements to the efficiency of our business operations, allowing us to focus our resources on areas with the greatest educational impact.
“She helped to make the budget more transparent,” she added. “I definitely want to say we wish her the very best.”
About the fact that Harris’ job has already been advertised, Whitney noted, “It’s a critical position.”
“And we have to find somebody strong for that position,” she said.