Haverhill Superintendent Jim Scully has formally offered the district's AD job to current Nashoba AD Tom O'Brien after an eight-week search to replace former Haverhill AD Garin Veris.
"He has the qualities that will work here," Scully said. "Everything in the conversation seemed to end up with Tom."
Scully said O'Brien is reviewing the contract offer and will finalize his decision this week. The offer is for a salary between $75,000 and $90,000 annually.
"Let him talk to his family," he said. "It's a big move. These jobs aren't easy. They're very demanding."
Scully said that after the two-month search, which featured 52 applicants from across the region, O'Brien and Lawrence's Paul Neal were the final two candidates considered. Both, Scully said, bring different experience to the table.
"Paul's worked magic with kids," Scully said about Neal's experience as an administrator and basketball coach in Lawrence. "Tom has the more overall experience."
Even though the offer was made to O'Brien Tuesday morning, Scully emphasized that the decision was anything but clear.
"It would be unfair for me to say one candidate was miles ahead," he said. "They're both very good candidates. They were screened thoroughly by those managing the process. Everyone feels it's a toss up."
Most recently, O'Brien served as the AD at Nashoba Regional, a position he's held since 2006. There, he oversaw over 700 student-athletes performing in 25 sports on 42 high school teams, while also working with 21 total middle school interscholastic team across three district middle schools.
See this week's Haverhill Gazette print edition and check back online for more on this story as it develops.