BREAUX BRIDGE, La. — Although the St. Martin School Board spent three hours interviewing the three candidates for superintendent last week, it took only one round of voting to name Lottie Beebe to the parish’s top school job on Jan. 9.
Beebe, a 22-year veteran of the St. Martin school system, received seven votes to succeed Richard Lavergne when he retires on June 30. Board members Mark Hebert and Russel Foti cast their votes for Daniel Rawls, principal of Stephensville Elementary, while Frederic Stelly abstained from the selection vote.
A third applicant — Charles S. Michel, Lafourche Parish supervisor of special education — did not get any votes.
An attempt by Foti to postpone the selection vote until a Jan. 30 meeting failed.
Foti wanted the delay “to give us more time to digest the information” gathered during the interviews.
In an emotional statement following the vote, Beebe recalled that she had grown up in poverty and thanked the board “for presenting me with this challenge. I know that our team will produce success for you.”
A native of Melville in northeast St. Landry Parish, Beebe earned degrees in education at Louisiana State University and also has studied at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Southern University in Baton Rouge.
After teaching at Palmetto Elementary in St. Landry Parish from 1984 to 1990, Beebe was hired as a resource teacher at Cecilia Junior High School in 1991. She later served as an assistant principal at the school and at Cecilia High School. She was principal of Cecilia Primary for the 2001-02 session. She has served as director of human resources for the St. Martin Parish school system since 2002.
Beebe also served as a St. Landry Parish School Board member from 1991 to 1998.
She was elected to the District 3 seat on the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education in 2011. The state Ethics Board ruled there is no conflict of interest or dual office holding conflict in her serving in both positions.
There was no discussion of her compensation package during the Jan. 9 meeting.