Bob Smith | Independent 2019
Tim Winter, South Kitsap School District superintendent, is a finalist to lead the Peninsula School District.

Bob Smith | Independent 2019 Tim Winter, South Kitsap School District superintendent, is a finalist to lead the Peninsula School District.

SKSD’s Winter is a finalist to become Peninsula superintendent

Krestin Bahr of Eatonville is also a finalist for school leadership role

PORT ORCHARD — South Kitsap School District Superintendent Tim Winter is a finalist in Peninsula School District’s search for a new leader.

Peninsula’s board of directors announced Monday that Winter and Krestin Bahr, superintendent of the Eatonville School District, are the finalists for the district’s top leadership role.

Either Winter or Bahr are to replace Dr. Art Jarvis, selected by that board in July 2018 as the district’s interim superintendent. Jarvis is retiring from the district on June 30.

Winter has been with South Kitsap since 2019 when he was hired away from Clarkston School District, where he had been superintendent for six years.

The South Kitsap superintendent shared his thoughts with district staff members last Friday in an emailed message:

“Through a long reflective process, I decided to apply for the superintendent position in the Peninsula School District. It was a difficult decision because I have strong feelings for all of you and for South Kitsap. However, wanting to be true to myself, I felt it was something I needed to pursue both professionally and personally.

“This is the one job that would pull me away from the work we are doing here. This decision is about a professional opportunity and not about wanting to leave South Kitsap. In a short time, I have come to love this district and feel hopeful about the future.

“I have been offered an interview and will proceed in the process. I don’t know what will happen in the coming week, but wanted all of you to hear from me. While I wouldn’t apply if I didn’t want the job in Peninsula, I feel like I am in a situation where no matter what happens, I will be at peace with where I land. The people in South Kitsap are very important to me and I hope you understand my decision.

“Whether or not I am the right fit for Peninsula remains to be seen. If not, you will be stuck with me and we will do great work together.”

Winter and Bahr were to have a second interview with the board, staff and community members, and spend a day either Tuesday or Wednesday interviewing with staff groups before an evening community interview.

Previously, Winter and four semifinalist candidates were interviewed by board directors on Saturday in a virtual open public forum.

The South Kitsap superintendent has a history serving in the Peninsula School District. He was principal of Peninsula High School from 2007 to 2014.

The other candidates on the Peninsula School District’s semifinalist list included:

• Dana Rosenbach, superintendent of North Mason School District

• Heidi Harris, assistant superintendent of Auburn School District

• John Harrison, chief of staff, Bellevue School District

The board anticipates announcing its choice for superintendent Friday and finalize the selection’s contract at its regular meeting on March 25.

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