WILTON, Conn. — Wilton schools will have a new leader at the end of the school year. The Board of Education on Thursday approved the appointment of Kevin Smith as the district’s next superintendent, the board announced Thursday night.
Smith, who is currently superintendent in Bethel, will take the reins effective July 1, Board of Education Chairman Bruce Likly said. Smith will succeed Gary Richards, who is retiring after 10 years of service in Wilton.
“We are thrilled Kevin Smith is coming to Wilton and believe he is exactly the right person to lead the Wilton schools on our continued journey of academic excellence and greater achievement,” Likly said.
Smith’s appointment, Likly said, is the result of an “extensive nationwide search” for Richards’ replacement. The Superintendent Search Committee looked at more than 20 qualified applicants, he said. From there, the candidate pool was narrowed down to five— all of whom were thoroughly interviewed, Likly said. Of those five, the list was narrowed down to three.
“Suffice it to say that Wilton is a highly desirable town, both because of our schools’ tremendous records of achievement, and because of our community’s strong support for education,” Likly said. “The search committee deliberated long and hard before extending an offer to Dr. Smith.”
“Ultimately though, we agreed unanimously that Kevin Smith’s approach to education, his vision for taking the Wilton schools to an even higher level of academic excellence, and his appreciation and dedication to the ‘whole child’ approach to learning, were the precise qualities we were seeking.”
Smith has been the superintendent in Bethel since 2012. Before that, he spent six years as the principal of Bethel Middle School.
From 2003 to 2006, Smith was employed as the principal of Sacred Heart Elementary School in the Bronx, N.Y., where he worked as assistant principal before being promoted. He also has classroom teaching experience at both the elementary and high school levels.
Smith earned a doctorate in educational leadership from Fordham University in 2006. In 2001, he received a master’s degree from Seton Hall and in 1995, a bachelor’s degree from Marist College.
“Dr. Smith understands the expectation that he will build upon the great leadership and accomplishments that have defined Dr. Richards’ tenure,” Likly said. “Dr. Smith is committed to our vision of making Wilton one of the top performing school districts in the nation, and to ensuring that every Wilton child leaves our schools well-prepared to face the challenges of the 21st century.”
Smith live in Trumbull with his wife, Jennifer, and their five children.