Staff

Arthur L. Bettencourt, Ed.D.
Executive Director
abett@nesdec.org

Danielle Chin
Business Manager
dchin@nesdec.org

Peggy Clark
Administrative Assistant
ep@nesdec.org

Carol Diesel
Administrative Assistant
pd@nesdec.org

Christina McGonagle
Executive Assistant
search@nesdec.org

 

Associate Staff

Gary G. Baker, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Anthony J. Bent, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Carolyn J. Burke, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Margery T. Clark, M.Ed.
Staff Associate, Planning

James A. Connelly, C.A.G.S.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Joseph F Connors, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Joseph M. Cronin, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Planning

Kenneth L. DeBenedictis, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

William G. Erickson, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Charles H. Ferris, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Ronald J. Fitzgerald, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Richard H. Goodman, Ed.D.
Project Director, Research & Development

Donald G. Kennedy, Ed.D.
Director, Planning
dkennedy@nesdec.org

John H. Kennedy, M.A.
Team Leader, Planning
jkennedy@nesdec.org

Edward J. Myers, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Brian C. O'Regan, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Elizabeth M. Osga, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Michael J. Palladino, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

Joanne G. Rys
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Florence Seldin, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

David J. Tobin, C.A.G.S.
Staff Associate, Planning, Executive Searching

Bruce E. Willard, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching

Joseph L. Wood, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searching, Planning

William G. Zimmerman, Jr., Ed.D.
Senior Associate, Planning, Executive Searching

 

 

 

 

Arthur L. Bettencourt, Ed.D., Executive Director
Dr. Bettencourt received his B.A. from Salem State College, his Master’s degree from Tufts University, and his Doctorate from Boston University.  He served as a Superintendent of Schools in Massachusetts for twenty-one years.  Prior to working as a Superintendent, he held several administrative positions in public schools.  Dr. Bettencourt has been a Lecturer at Simmons College in Boston, Massachusetts, and is active in the training and preparation of educators at   the graduate level.  He also serves on the Boston University Pre-k-12 Educational Advisory Board.  Dr. Bettencourt has offered numerous professional development workshops in school governance, planning and organizational development, leadership entry, career path development, and curriculum design.  While serving as a superintendent, Dr. Bettencourt administered several school construction and renovation projects at both the elementary and secondary levels.  He is on the Board of Directors of the National School Development Council and recently served as the organization’s president.  Dr. Bettencourt coordinates all of NESDEC’s executive search and planning projects, and has worked for the firm since 2004.

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NESDEC Associate Staff

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Gary G. Baker, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Gary Baker received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire, a Master's degree in Teaching from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a Doctorate from Boston University. He has been a teacher, administrator and superintendent of schools as well as a college instructor. Dr. Baker is a member of the Suburban School Superintendents organization, a select group of suburban school superintendents who serve quality districts in a high-performance manner. He has been a workshop leader and textbook author for The Amherst Project and its Committee on the Study of History. Dr. Baker joined the NESDEC staff in 2002.

Anthony J. Bent, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Anthony Bent received his Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral degree from Boston College.  He served as a Superintendent of Schools for the Shrewsbury School District for 15 years and, recently, as an Interim Superintendent for two school districts in Massachusetts.  He has held several administrative positions in public schools, including Director of Curriculum and Instruction (K-12).  While serving as a superintendent, Dr. Bent oversaw four new school facility projects.  Dr. Bent is also active in the coaching of area superintendents for the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents. 
 

Carolyn J. Burke, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Carolyn Burke has been a public school educator for over thirty-five years. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education from Boston State College, a Master’s degree in special education and a Master’s degree in administration from the University of Massachusetts, Boston.  She earned a Doctorate from Boston University in Policy, Planning and Administration.  Dr. Burke has worked as a school principal for over 18 years and as an assistant principal, head teacher and teacher of all grades 1-6, including special education inclusion and grade six math/science.  She served as the Associate Program Director for the Rural Small Schools Network at NESDEC, adjunct faculty at Salem (MA) State College, Graduate School of Education, and most recently, as a senior instructor in the Department of Educational Leadership at Cambridge College, Cambridge, MA. 

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Margery T. Clark, M.Ed.
Staff Associate, Planning Services
Ms. Clark has been a public school educator for over thirty years. She received a B.A. from the University of Connecticut, Storrs and a M.Ed. from Lesley University, Cambridge, MA. She has served as a primary and elementary school principal in three school districts, as a K-8 Gifted Specialist and coordinator, and as an elementary teacher in three states. She serves as a facilitator of professional workshops and most recently has taught graduate courses on Mathematics Teaching and Supervision for Fitchburg State College. Throughout New England, Ms. Clark has visited schools, participating in numerous NESDEC facilities planning projects, completing reviews of educational programs, school facility surveys, and school capacity analyses.

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James A. Connelly, C.A.G.S.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Mr. James Connelly received his B.S. degree from Southern Connecticut State University, a Master's degree from Teachers College/Columbia University, and a Professional Diploma of Advanced Studies from Teachers College/Columbia University. He has been a teacher, administrator, central office administrator and superintendent of schools. In addition, Mr. Connelly was a Senior Specialist for the Northeast Superintendents' Leadership Council at the Education Alliance at Brown University. He was an adjunct member of the faculty at Southern Connecticut State University and is a member of Connecticut Associations of Public School Superintendent's (CAPSS) Superintendent Support Team. He has been NESDEC's associate representing Connecticut for over ten years, and has served as an interim superintendent of schools in several Connecticut school districts.

 Joseph F. Connors, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search and Planning Services
Dr. Connors received his B.S. from State College at Fitchburg, Massachusetts and a CAGS, M.Ed. and Ph.D. from Boston College.  He has over 36 years’ experience in education and served more than ten years as Superintendent for the Grafton, Massachusetts School District.  Dr. Connors also served as Assistant Superintendent of a regional high school district, a Director of Special Education and has participated in several school building projects.  He currently serves as an Adjunct Professor at Worcester State College and has worked as Director of Operations for a superintendents’ collaborative.

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Joseph M. Cronin, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Planning Services
Dr. Joseph M. Cronin received Bachelor and Masters degrees from Harvard University and a Doctorate from Stanford University.  He has been a teacher and middle school principal, and taught at the Harvard Graduate School of Education where he was associate professor and associate dean.  He served as the Massachusetts Secretary of Educational Affairs and State Superintendent (Commissioner) of Education in Illinois.  Dr. Cronin was president of the Massachusetts Higher Education Assistance Corporation and president of Bentley College.  Recently he has been a visiting scholar at Harvard and senior fellow both at the New England Board of Higher Education and the Nellie Mae Educational Foundation.  He was an adjunct at Boston University, teaching courses in Educational Policy and Budget and Finance and has taught courses at Boston College and Stanford University.  He is a former vice president of the American Educational Research Association and policy chair of the Council of Chief State School Officers.

Kenneth L. DeBenedictis, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program and Planning Services
Dr. Ken DeBenedictis received his B.S. in Education from Northeastern University, his M.Ed. from Boston University, a CAGS in Administration and Supervision from Boston University, and his Doctorate in Education from Boston College. He was superintendent of the Hollis-Brookline Schools, SAU #41 in New Hampshire and was recognized as the New Hampshire School Superintendent of the Year in 2004. He has been a classroom teacher, a district principal and a principal (recognized as Massachusetts School Principal of the Year and National Distinguished School Principal in 1989) as well as an assistant superintendent with major responsibilities for K-12 curriculum and instruction programs. He has written several articles and taught graduate level courses at Fitchburg State College and Plymouth State University.

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William G. Erickson, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Dr. William Erickson received his Bachelor’s degree from Fitchburg State College, a Master of Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and his Doctorate from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.  His administrative experience in education spans almost 35 years, including 14 years as a superintendent in Vermont and Massachusetts.
 

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Charles H. Ferris, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Charles "Bud" Ferris received his B.A. degree from Clark University, a Master's degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, a Certification of Advanced Graduate Studies from Worcester State College, and a Doctorate from Nova University. Dr. Ferris has been a teacher, headmaster, principal and superintendent of schools. He has also been an instructor at Fitchburg State College and Salem State College.

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Ronald J. Fitzgerald, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Dr. Fitzgerald received his B.S., Master's and Doctorate degrees from the University of Massachusetts. He has been a teacher, Director of Research for the Massachusetts Advisory Council on Education, and Superintendent of the Minuteman Regional Technical School District (MA), a post he held for 28 years. Dr. Fitzgerald is also an adjunct professor at the University of Massachusetts, Boston University, and Fitchburg State College.

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Richard H. Goodman, Ed.D.
Project Director, Research and Development
Dr. Goodman earned his Bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, an M.A.T. from Wesleyan University, and a Doctorate from Harvard University. He served for two decades as Executive Director of the New Hampshire School Boards Association and New Hampshire School Administrators Association where he conducted scores of workshops for school boards and superintendents. A former superintendent of schools, Dr. Goodman was Chair of the NSBA Committee that produced the first edition of Becoming a Better Board Member. He co-authored, Getting There from Here -- School Board-Superintendent Collaboration: Creating a School Governance Team Capable of Raising Student Achievement under a grant from the Kellogg Foundation. In addition to his research projects, Dr. Goodman conducts governance workshops for school boards and superintendents in New England.

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Donald G. Kennedy, Ed.D.
Senior Staff Associate/Team Leader, Planning Services, Learning and Teaching
Dr. Kennedy received his Bachelor’s degree from Colby College, his Masters from Wesleyan University and his Doctorate from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He has been superintendent of schools in Maynard and Duxbury, Massachusetts and held numerous administrative positions in the Weston, Massachusetts School District.  Dr. Kennedy has taught at the graduate level and has consulted with many school districts in matters of curriculum, facility planning, organizational development and early childhood education.  He has over 35 years experience in education with 17 years experience as a superintendent of schools. Dr. Kennedy has done extensive work in the area of school enrollment forecasting, and has served as NESDEC Team Leader for over one hundred projects for Planning Services.

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John H. Kennedy, M.A.
Senior Staff Associate/Team Leader, Planning Services
Mr. John Kennedy has been an educator for over thirty years.  He received his B.A. from Villanova University and a M.A. from Boston College.  He has served as a director of curriculum, assessment and professional development and a K-12 curriculum coordinator.  Prior to that, he was a department chairperson and classroom teacher. He has had extensive experience with curriculum mapping, standards alignment and assessment, and professional development planning and implementation. He has also served as a Title I Director.  Mr. Kennedy has led several Department of Education workshops and seminars on a range of topics related to improving academic achievement. He has served as an assistant chair on an NEASC Visiting Committee, and he was a member of the committee that developed the Massachusetts Social Studies Curriculum Framework. As a NESDEC Associate since 2006, Mr. Kennedy has conducted demographic studies, strategic planning projects, and he has participated in over 100 school capacity and needs analyses.

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Edward J. Myers, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Dr. Myers received his B.A. degree from Providence College, a Master’s degree from Rhode Island College, and a Doctorate from Boston University. He has been a teacher, central office administrator, and superintendent in Rhode Island for many years. He joined NESDEC in 1997 as an Executive Search Associate. Dr. Myers also teaches at the college level.

 

Brian O’Regan, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Brian O’Regan received his B.A. from Fairfield University in Connecticut, an M.A. from Columbia University, and a M.Ed. and Ed.D. from the University of Vermont.  He served as a Vermont superintendent of schools for twenty years. Prior to his employment as a superintendent, he held teaching and administrative positions in central Vermont. Dr. O’Regan also served as Executive Director of the Vermont Data Consortium and as Deputy Commissioner with the Vermont Department of Education.  He currently serves as the School Leadership Program Coordinator for the Graduate School of Education at St. Michael’s College.

 

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Elizabeth M. Osga, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Dr. Osga began her career in Stonington, CT as an elementary and middle school teacher, and advanced into the roles of principal and assistant superintendent. In this capacity, she assisted in the design and development of site-based management models of school improvement as well as comprehensive curriculum renewal processes. Dr. Osga served for 14 years as district superintendent in Griswold and Lyme-Old Lyme CT. Her service to education has continued since her retirement from the superintendency. Among her current professional activities, she is an adjunct professor of Educational Leadership for Sacred Heart University, Chair of the Women’s Group of the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPPS), a consultant to the Talent Office of the Connecticut State Department of Education and a consultant to and project facilitator for numerous districts and organizations.

 

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Michael J. Palladino, Ph.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Palladino received his B.S. and a Master's degree in Education from Bridgewater State College and a C.A.G.S. in special education and rehabilitation from Northeastern University. He earned his Doctorate in Education Administration from Boston College. Dr. Palladino was Executive Director of the Project ACCEPT/MetroWest Education Collaborative for almost thirty years and has served as president of the Massachusetts Organization of Education Collaboratives.

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Joanne G. Rys
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Ms. Rys has served as a member of a local school committee and has been a search consultant for the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. In her prior work with MASC, she served as a Field Service Representative, Associate Director and Interim Executive Director. In addition to her work as an Executive Search Associate, Ms. Rys is also responsible for school board training in many specific areas. She has been a NESDEC associate since 2001.

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Florence Seldin, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program, Planning Services
Dr. Seldin earned her B.A. from Brooklyn College, an M.Ed. from Springfield College, and a Doctorate from the University of Rochester. She has extensive experience as a teacher, principal, superintendent, lecturer, and workshop presenter. Dr. Seldin joined NESDEC in 1991 and has conducted many successful executive searches in New England. She also works with school districts on policy book development and strategic planning.

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David J. Tobin, C.A.G.S.
Staff Associate, Planning Services, Executive Search Program
Mr. Tobin received his B.S. degree in Education from Worcester State College and a M.A. in teaching from Clark University. He was Superintendent/Director of the Assabet Valley Regional Vocational School District for twenty years and has served as a consultant to numerous school districts and to private industry. Mr. Tobin had a major consulting role in our projects for the Nashua (NH) Vocational Technical High School and for the Worcester (MA) Technical High School.

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Bruce E. Willard, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Search Program
Dr. Bruce Willard received his Bachelor's degree in Education from Plymouth State College, a Master's degree from Hofstra University, a Certificate of Advanced Studies from the University of Vermont, and a Doctorate from the University of Massachusetts, School of Education.  Dr. Willard has been an educator for over 40 years.  In addition to his work as a teacher and a principal, he served as a superintendent of schools for over 25 years.  He has also been a Trustee at Smith Vocational School and a member of the adjunct faculty at Smith College.  Dr. Willard has been a search consultant for NESDEC since 2001.

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Joseph L. Wood, Ed.D.
Staff Associate, Executive Searc Program, Planning Services
Dr. Joseph L. Wood received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Boston State College and his Doctorate from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Dr. Wood has been an Assistant Research Professor and Director of the the Executive Leadership Program in the Neag School of Education at the University of Connecticut. He served as a superintendent of schools for the Berkshire Hills Regional School District in Massachusetts for nine years and in South Windsor, Connecticut for twenty years. Prior to working as a superintendent, Dr. Wood served as a principal, foreign language department chair and teacher. He has also offered numerous professional development workshops and was the 2005 recipient of the Connecticut Association of School Superintendents Presidential Award.

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William G. Zimmerman, Jr., Ed.D.
Senior Staff Associate, Planning Services, Executive Search Program
Dr. Zimmerman received his B.S. from the University of New Hampshire, and both his M.Ed. and Ed.D. from the University of Miami. He began his career in education as a music teacher in Maine. He then taught educational administration at the graduate level. He has been a superintendent of schools for 28 years, most recently in Wayland, Massachusetts where he directed numerous and significant school building projects. He joined the NESDEC staff as Senior Associate in Planning and Management and the Executive Search Program in 1992. Dr. Zimmerman presents workshops on job-seeking skills for educational administrators and school facility planning. He is co-author of the book, Getting There from Here -- School Board-Superintendent Collaboration: Creating a School Governance Team Capable of Raising Student Achievement under a grant from the Kellogg Foundation and has conducted numerous workshops on school district governance for school boards and superintendents in New England.

 

 

 
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