By John Burton
RED BANK – After what school board President Ben Forest labeled a “long, thorough and arduous” search, the board of education has found a new superintendent of schools.
The board voted unanimously at its Tuesday evening meeting to hire Jared Rumage to fill the position that has been vacant since the end of September.
Rumage, 43, is currently the principal of Iselin Middle School in Woodbridge Township. He will start in the district on July 1, according to Forest.
Board members interviewed 14 candidates for the slot, Forest said. After trips to his school, Forest said he and fellow board members were impressed with Rumage’s work ethic and ability and look forward to him bringing those talents to the district.
“There were many qualities we liked about him,” Forest said. “He can handle multiple things at any given time. He’s well versed in state requirements, in budgeting, in dealing with staff and students.”
“You guys are in store for such an amazing leader,” board member Suzanne Viscomi told a group of district teachers in attendance at the meeting.
Rumage, who has lived in Fair Haven for 13 years, has been with the Woodbridge district for 19 years.
“I heard so many good things about the (Red Bank) district,” Rumage said. “I thought it would be a great opportunity … I wanted the opportunity to be a superintendent.
That desire to advance and work in the district seemed to resonate with the board, Forest said. “He really wants to be here and that means a lot.”
Rumage’s starting salary will be $145,000 a year.
The district has two schools, a primary and a middle school, for its approximately 1,390 students. It has been without a permanent superintendent since Sept. 30, when Laura Morana, who had been with the district seven years, retired and was named as interim executive county superintendent for Mercer County. During that period, the district has relied on an interim Superintendent Harold Reid.