MARIETTA - Washington County Career Center Superintendent Roger Bartunek is retiring June 30 after 12 years on the job.
Bartunek's letter of resignation was accepted Tuesday at the Washington County Joint Vocational Board of Education's monthly meeting.
"As I finish my 40th year as an educator, I can only feel it just wasn't long enough," he read from the letter at the meeting. "Thousands of students, untold numbers of educators, support staff, parents, community members and board members have touched my life in such a positive way."
Bartunek became superintendent of the career center in 2000, after serving four years as assistant superintendent of the Mid-East Vocational School in Zanesville.
In voting 5-0, with two members absent, to accept the resignation, some board members said they did so reluctantly.
"We've really moved the career center forward in a lot of different programs during his tenure here," said board President Larry Holdren.
Application deadline - March 30.
Interviews begin - April 2.
Decision - May 8.
Contract begins - June 1.
Batunek said he and his wife, Kathy, plan to stay in the area. He'll spend the first part of his retirement catching up on projects around the house, hobbies and vacationing. After that, he plans to go back to work.
"It's just the nature of the retirement system. At some point in time, it's just not practical to work anymore. It's time for a second career," he said.
Bartunek said he feels a lot has been accomplished during his tenure but was quick to emphasize it came about through cooperation with others. He pointed out that the career center's budget has been balanced without seeking a levy and the programs have been streamlined so there is less staff despite having more students.
Perhaps the most important accomplishment, Bartunek said, is that people have a better understanding of the career center.
"I think we've been able to communicate to the community what we're really all about," he said. "We're just another alternative. We're not easier. We're different."
Holdren said the board will accept applications through March 30 and the board hopes to make a decision by May 8.
The new superintendent would start June 1.
"We want to have 30 days overlap with Roger and whoever the new superintendent is," Holdren said.
Salary and benefits for the next superintendent will depend on that individual's education and experience. Bartunek receives an annual salary of $101,420.
Tuesday, the board recognized three individuals for outstanding contributions to career and technical education: Keystone Automotive Industries sales representative Tom Reed, who assists the auto collision program with acquiring parts in a timely fashion; Marietta Occupational Health Partners business manager Barbara Lockhart, who serves on an advisory committee and assists with the center's annual Youth Safety Day, and Clear Channel account executive Greg Siegfried, who produces advertisements for the center and emcees its annual open house.