Board names Dr. Clayton Wilcox new superintendent at CMS

After more than five months, school board members announced Tuesday that they have selected a new superintendent to lead Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

Earlier this month, the CMS school board finalized their plans by selecting two candidates. During past superintendent searches, the public was able to meet the candidates. That didn't happen during this search.

"This is more and more common for school boards and it was definitely the advice of the search firm that we hired so we chose to follow their advice," said board member Elyse Dashew.

The CMS school board says they were impressed with Dr. Wilcox and his experience in larger districts.

Dr. Wilcox is scheduled to assume his position in July 2017, with a four year contract ending on June 30, 2021. 

"We set out to not only find the best superintendent, but the best superintendent for this community," said Board of Education Chair Mary McCray. "Based on the input we received from this community, and our interviews with Dr. Wilcox, I am confident that we got both."

Dr. Wilcox was one of two finalists out of 52 candidates pursuing the position. He comes from Washington County Public Schools in Hagerstown, Md. Dr. Wilcox previously served as superintendent in Pinellas County, Florida and East Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

He will be paid $280,000 per year, but the completer contract still needs to be approved by the school board in January. 

"I am drawn to Charlotte-Mecklenburg for a number of reasons, first because of your core beliefs are my core beliefs- that you and your school board embrace a compelling vision that all students must receive the best education available anywhere," Dr. Wilcox said in a letter to the community.

Dr. Wilcox was not at a press conference announcing his hiring on Tuesday, but he did write a community letter. The CMS school board is planning a community meeting with the new superintendent sometime in January.