Superintendents Murley, Speer finalists for top job at Grant Wood AEA

They and third finalist to be interviewed for roughly $240,000 job next week

Stephen Murley
Stephen Murley

Iowa City schools Superintendent Stephen Murley and College Community School District Superintendent John Speer are finalists for the chief administrator role at the Grant Wood Area Education Agency, the agency said Friday.

Murley, Speer and Susan Meade, superintendent of the Winterset Community School District near Des Moines, are the three finalists, according to a news release.

A full-time position, the chief administrator role comes with a salary “in the range” of $240,000, according to a job listing shared by the agency.

Murley’s salary during the 2016-2017 school was about $214,000, according to the most recent data available from the Iowa Department of Education. Speer was paid about $200,000.

More than 50 people applied for the position after the agency opened a search to replace Joe Crozier, who is retiring in June.

It expects to announce its new chief administrator “by early March,” according to the release.

All public and many private school districts in Iowa are supervised by one of nine Area Education Agencies in the state. The Grant Wood AEA supports more than 72,000 students in seven counties: Johnson, Linn, Benton, Cedar, Iowa, Jones and Washington.


Both the Iowa City Community School District and the College Community School District receive services from Grant Wood.

Neither Murley nor Speer immediately responded to Gazette requests Friday. They and Meade will be interviewed for the position next week, according to the release.

“This has been a very competitive process, and our board is pleased with the pool of highly qualified candidates who applied for this position,” Jim Green, Grant Wood board president said in a statement. “We look forward to the next phase of this process, and are confident that any of these candidates will do an outstanding job leading the work at Grant Wood AEA.”

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