HOLDEN, Maine - Richard Modery of Orrington was still in school at the University of Maine when he first walked though the doors of Holbrook Middle School.
Now he’ s returning as the school’ s principal.
“He student taught here at Holbrook and was an ed tech back in the 1990s,” said Dave Anderson, interim superintendent, on Tuesday.
The SAD 63 board on Monday hired Modery to succeed Gary Gonyar, who took a job at the William S. Cohen School in Bangor.
“His enthusiasm and positive energy is magnetic,” Anderson said. “I’ m really excited to bring Richard on board, and we’ re really excited about getting off to a great start this year.”
Modery has served as assistant principal and athletic administrator at Leonard Middle School in Old Town for the past two years. Before that he held a similar job at Dexter Middle School for two years. He worked at the All Saints Catholic School in Bangor for five years, serving as the assistant principal, athletic administrator and physical education teacher.
He earned a bachelor’ s degree in kinesiology and physical education in 1998 from the University of Maine and his master’ s degree in educational leadership from UM in May.
“He will definitely be a positive asset,” Anderson said. “We feel it’ s going to be a great match.”
Anderson, who has been the Holden Elementary School principal for the last 12 years, was asked to be interim superintendent in May to replace Superintendent Louise Regan who is on administrative leave pending an investigation into her recent conduct.
“I’ m bouncing back and forth,” he said of the two jobs. “It’ s challenging, but it’ s been a good learning experience.”
He added, “I have a terrific staff over there at Holden School. They’ ve been very supportive and continue to do an outstanding job,” which has allowed him to do both jobs.
Now that the Holbrook principal position has been filled, Anderson said, he and Modery can focus on filling three other posts at the school — an eighth grade science teacher, an eighth grade social studies teacher and a special education position.
During the board meeting, chairwoman Linda Goodrich and vice chairwoman Karen Clark were re-elected to their positions by fellow board members, and the panel also held an executive session to discuss teacher contracts that expire at the end of August.