BOSTON (WHDH) - The Boston School Committee narrowed down its search for the Superintendent of Boston Public Schools from 34 initial candidates to two finalists, both of whom have previous connections to the district. Previous Superintendent Brenda Cassellius finishes her term at the end of the month.

The two finalists will participate in a public interview process on June 23 and 24 respectively, which consists of three community panels and a public interview by the Boston School Committee.

The first candidate, Mary Skipper, is the current superintendent of Somerville Public Schools, a role she began in July 2015. Prior to that, she worked at Boston Public Schools as its network superintendent of high schools, where she oversaw 34 high schools serving almost 20,000 students. She also helped launch TechBoston Academy as its founding headmaster in 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University, and master’s degrees from Harvard and Columbia. Skipper lives in Dorchester with her husband and three children.

The other finalist is Tommy Welch, the current Region 1 superintendent (K-12) of Boston Public Schools. In this role, Welch currently supports 15 schools serving over 7,000 students across Charlestown, East Boston and the North End. Prior to his work at BPS, Welch was the founding principal of a middle school and a high school in South Central Los Angeles. He also taught students including English language learners and special education classes at the elementary level and English at the high school level. Welch is a graduate of Occidental College and UCLA, and earned a doctorate at Boston College in 2020. He lives in East Boston with his wife and two children, both of whom are BPS students.

“Boston’s future is tied in every way to the success of our public schools and the health and well-being of our young people,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “I’m excited to be at this final stage in our search process and so grateful to the Search Committee for leading a robust process that yielded a strong, diverse pool of candidates with a wide range of lived and professional experiences.”

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