The Wyoming State Board of Education announced the six candidates it will interview for the position of Director of the Wyoming Department of Education today in Cheyenne.

The State Board of Education in Cheyenne will interview the semifinalists over the next two days. Those receiving invitations to interview include:

Tony Apostle – A retired Superintendent of Puyallup Public Schools in Puyallup, WA. Apostle oversaw a district with 21,000 students and a budget of $230 million. Apostle holds his Education Doctorate from Washington State University. He was also the Director of Administrative Services and Elementary Education for Puyallup Schools.

Charles Hokanson – President of the Hokanson Consulting Group, LLC in Arlington, VA. Hokanson works with government agencies and non-profits on educational strategy, strategic management and donor relations. Hokanson has a Juris Doctorate from Harvard Law School and has held various positions in the US Department of Education including Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education and Chief of Staff, Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development.

Stanley Olson – Director of Business Development, Silverback Learning Solutions in Boise, ID. Olson holds a Doctorate from Western Michigan University and was formerly a superintendent in Boise as well as Casper.

Richard Crandall – Crandall holds an MBA from Notre Dame and is the CEO and CFO of CN Resources and Crandall Corporate Dietitians in Mesa, AZ. He is a current State Senator in Arizona and the past chair of the Arizona Senate and House Education Committees. He is also a former member of the Mesa Schools Governing Board.

Michael Sentance – Sentance is a consultant specializing in educational change out of Concord, MA. Sentence holds a Juris Doctorate from Duquesne University and a Master of Law degree from the Boston University School of Law. He is a former Senior Education Advisor for the Governor of Massachusetts.

Norman Ridder  - Ridder is the current Superintendent of the Springfield Public Schools in Springfield, MO. Ridder oversees an enrollment of 24,876 students and a budget of $273 million. He holds his Education Doctorate from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and is the former Superintendent of the Colorado Springs School District 11, during which he oversaw a district with an enrollment of 31,000.

The State Board of Education has been tasked with recommending to Governor Matt Mead three qualified candidates. The Governor must appoint a permanent director before December 1 according to Enrolled Act 1.

The State Board of Education will interview semifinalists May 31 and June 1 in closed session. The State Board has set aside two hours for each interview, starting at 8:15 and ending at 5:45 on Friday, May 31 and again from 9-11:30 a.m. on Saturday.

In addition to the closed session interviews, semifinalists for the position of Director of the WDE will be asked to participate in a session of questions and answers with the public, May 31 and June 1. Stakeholders attending the meetings with Director candidates will be asked to offer their opinion on the candidates to the State Board. That feedback will be made available to the Board of Education prior to making a final decision.

The semifinal candidates will be available to meet the public in Room 126 of the Hathaway Building at the following times:

Friday, May 31

9:9:30 a.m. – Stanley Olsen
11-11:30 – Richard Crandall
1:30-2 p.m. – Charles Hokanson
3:30-4 p.m. – Michael Sentance

Saturday, June 1
9-9:30 a.m. – Nathan Ridder
11-11:30 a.m. – Tony Apostle