Employees retire from district, various schools

The class of 2012 isn't the only group moving on this year — a group of administrators are retiring from the Laguna Beach Unified School District.

Norma Shelton, assistant superintendent of business services, Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services Nancy Hubbell and Laguna Beach High School Assistant Principal Gretchen Ernsdorf are retiring.

Also retiring from the district office are Human Resources Coordinator Patty Beaver and Facility Director Eric Jetta, Supt. Sherine Smith said. Beaver has been with the Laguna Beach Unified School District since 1988 and Jetta since 2003.

On Monday, the district announced new administrators in a press release.

Previously Director of Fiscal Services, Dean West will take over Shelton's position as assistant superintendent of business services. West has held positions as acting Executive Director of Business Services in the West Covina Unified School District and as Chief Financial Officer in the San Marino Unified School District.

Las Flores Middle School Principal Shannon Soto will join the district as director of fiscal services. Kaiser Elementary School Principal Jerry Vlasic will join the team as director of human resources and public communications.

Ocean View High School Assistant Principal Courtney Robinson will join the high school and assume Ernsdorf's position.

Deni Christensen, who is currently executive director of secondary schools in Capistrano Unified School District, will assume the role of assistant superintendent of instructional services.

"This is a bittersweet time," Supt. Sherine Smith said in a statement to the Coastline Pilot. "We are sad to be losing several dedicated, talented, long-serving administrators. Nancy, Norma, Gretchen, Patty, and Eric are well known to many."

Shelton has been with the district since 2001 and Ernsdorf has been with the district since 1989. Hubbell has been with the district 16 years total — as director of special education from 1988 to 1996 and as assistant superintendent of instructional services, from 2004 to present.

"I think, like most people, it's a really personal decision," Hubbell said about retiring. She said her husband, a doctor, is expecting to retire as well and they're planning to stay in London for four months, which is where he attended medical school.

When asked if she'll miss the district, Hubbell was quick to respond.

"First and foremost, I'll miss the people," she said. "I've made lifelong friends here. I will miss the work. I love my job and I love collectively what we've accomplished over the last six years."

"They exemplify the heart and soul of Laguna Beach Unified School District," Smith said. "Yet, we are happy for them all as they start a new chapter in their lives. They may be leaving us, but they leave a legacy to be proud of."

Other retiring staff from various schools include: Laguna Beach High School teacher Catharine Dunlap, El Morro Elementary Library Media Specialist Claudia Cameron, Top of the World Elementary Instructional Aide Clara Candelaria, LBHS Community Service Clerk Jeanne Harrell, LBHS Library Media Specialist and Top of the World Instructional Aide Sally Salter.


Twitter: @joannaclay

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