Anchorage School District

Superintendent search


The Anchorage School Board began the search process in August 2011 for the Anchorage School District’s next superintendent.


Search timeline



Draft superintendent process, criteria, material & application; Hire search firm



Community feedback on desired criteria of the new superintendent



Job opening posted, board began accepting applications


Early November

Application period closed. Board received more than 150 applications containing an excess of 1,600 pages


November & December

Application review and initial interviews



Selection and announcement of finalists
Dec. 15 news release for details of process


Early January

Finalists participate in separate on-site visits


Mid to late January

Candidate selection, contract finalized
Jan. 31 news release announcing selection


February - June



July 1, 2012

New superintendent leads ASD


Watch President Guess announce the selection

Jan. 31, 2012 press conference on the ASD YouTube channel

Superintendent selection announcement press conference


President Guess announces finalists

President Guess announced the two finalists at a Dec. 15, 2011 press conference


News releases

Jan. 31, 2012
Dr. Jim Browder to lead Anchorage School District as Superintendent
Dec. 15, 2011
Board names finalists for new superintendent search
Sept. 1, 2011
Board launches national search for superintendent
June 29, 2011
Board to launch search for superintendent
June 28, 2011
Comeau announces retirement

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Jim BrowderDr. Jim Browder to lead Anchorage School District as superintendent

Jan. 31, 2012 - Citing his passion for education, proven financial leadership amid difficult economic circumstances and a track record of improving academic success in large, diverse settings, the Anchorage School Board announced that Dr. Jim Browder will be the next superintendent of the Anchorage School District. Read Dr. Browder's contract (PDF)


Dr. Browder will begin transitional visits to Anchorage starting in the February/March timeframe, with a full-time transition to take place after April 1. Current Superintendent Carol Comeau will remain in charge during the transition and with the district until her retirement on June 30. Read the rest of the announcement


Search process

The Anchorage School Board began the search process in August 2011 for the Anchorage School District’s next superintendent. Current Superintendent Carol Comeau will retire on June 30, 2012.


The board reviewed more than 150 applications, narrowing the search down to two finalists in December 2011: Steve Atwater, superintendent of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District in Soldotna; and Dr. James Browder, former superintendent of Lee County School District in Fort Myers, Florida. In January 2012 the finalists each participated in a three-day on-site visit to continue the interview process. Dr. James Browder was chosen as the next superintendent on Jan. 31, 2012.


Information about the search process is provided below.