Community bids Clark farewell

by Laura Bednar

Sept. 25 board of education meeting

The Nordonia Hills Board of Education and other community members gave Superintendent Dr. Joe Clark a proper sendoff before he becomes superintendent at Westerville City Schools near Columbus.

Cindy May, parent of Nordonia students, read a poem in Clark’s honor citing his leadership and mentioning his winter-based nickname, “No Snow Joe.”

Board President Chad Lahrmer gave Clark a T-shirt with Westerville logos, a shield representing the Nordonia Knights and goodbye cards from the community.

“For the past 14 years you have been a phenomenal ambassador for the Nordonia Hills School District,” said Lahrmer. “We wish you the best of luck in Westerville.”

Other board members offered words of praise.

“You were a great example of what leadership is supposed to look like in education,” said Amy Vajdich.

Said Matt Kearney, “Thank you for putting the students first.”

Jason Tidmore, who heads the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, noted that Clark was superintendent during some of the toughest times. He said Clark’s courageous leadership made it easier for him to be an advocate for diversity in the district.

Liz McKinley said all the kids in the district knew who Clark was, and he was able to find the good in everything.

“I love what I do, the people I do it with and the people I do it for,” Clark said, adding that the facilities students and staff have to work in are an embarrassment. “It is time for [the community] to take care of our kids and our staff and get some better buildings,” he said. “I hope this community takes that to heart.”

He ended his comments by praising the staff, administrators, kids and community as the best for which he could have hoped. “I will always bleed green,” he said.

Casey Wright, former district business manager, was appointed the interim superintendent for $125 a day effective Oct. 1 through July 31, 2024.

Stephen Marlow was hired as interim business manager, effective the same dates, for $99,122 per year.

Rushwood security

The district will replace three maglock door access devices at Rushwood Elementary School for $1,960 from American Security. These are locking devices that consist of an electromagnet and an armature plate, according to


  • Friends of the Nordonia Hills Public Library donated $250 to pay for the cost of busing for a field trip to the Akron Main Library for an author visit.
  • Lee Eaton PTA donated solar-powered crosswalk signs and light-up foldable traffic cones, valued at $4,269, and six outdoor benches, valued at $1,242, to Lee Eaton Intermediate School.
  • David Carducci donated books/magazines on art, soft pastels, pastel board/paper, drawing utensils and sketchbooks/paper totaling $2,400 to the Nordonia High School art department.
  • Nordonia choral music department donated $5,000 to supplement the accompanist’s stipend. ∞