Big Hollow School District 38 has a new leader.
Officials from the Ingleside-based school district have approved a contract with Christine Demory, making her the new school superintendent when Ron Pazanin retires on June 30.
The three-year contract for Demory, currently superintendent at Hiawatha Community School District in the DeKalb County village of Kirkland, was approved unanimously by school board members during a special session Wednesday.
"I think she is great," board member Vickie Gallichio said. "She will be a great addition to the Big Hollow family."
Demory also served previously as superintendent at Prophetstown-Lyndon-Tampico Community School District 3 in Whiteside County. She holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona, and earned masters and doctorate degrees from Northern Illinois University.
Pazanin is retiring after 22 years as superintendent of Big Hollow. When he started in 1990, the district employed only 18 teachers and had 305 students. The district now has 150 teachers and support staff, and an enrollment of 1,780 students in portions of Fox Lake, Round Lake, Lakemoor, Volo and Ingleside.
Demory also takes over a district that has grown in population 15 straight years. In six of the past 10 years, Big Hollow had more growth than any other school district in Lake County.
Gallichio said Demory will face rising enrollment at a time when money is getting short, and will have to deal with teacher contract negotiations in her first year as superintendent.