The Marana school board next week will pick one of two candidates to be the district’s next superintendent.

Patricia Lopez, the chief academic officer and deputy superintendent for the Tucson Unified School District, and Doug Wilson, the assistant superintendent for human resources at Pueblo City Schools in Pueblo, Colo. are the two finalists.

Earlier this week, a special Marana Unified School District panel interviewed five prospective candidates out of the 15 who had applied, according to district spokeswoman Tamera Crawley.

The selection panel was made up of district residents, parents, principals and school administrators.

Three finalists were submitted for consideration, but one withdrew.

District officials hope the new school chief will take over on July 1. He or she will manage the district’s 13,000 students and 17 schools.

Lopez recently announced she would step down from her TUSD post.

Outgoing Marana superintendent Dennis Dearden announced earlier this year that he would leave by June 30.

The Marana school board will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 12, at town hall, 11555 W. Civic Center Drive.

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