Waconia superintendent in running for Edina post

By Staff Reports

Waconia schools’ superintendent has been named a finalist for the same position in Edina.

At the Feb. 16 meeting of the Edina board of education, Pat Devine was selected as one of five finalists in that district’s search for a new top administrator.

Patrick Devine

“Ever since I started in Waconia, my thought process was that I am going to retire from here some day in the future. I had no plans to move,” Devine said in a letter sent to district staff on Feb. 16. “But, when this kind of opportunity was presented to me, I had to look into it. There are only a handful of school districts in the state that I would even consider moving to and they would need to seek me out. Well, one of those districts, Edina, has come to me.”

Edina’s current superintendent, Ric Dressen, has announced that he will retire in July. Dressen is a former Waconia superintendent, who left the district for the post in Edina – which he has held for 11 years.

Devine said he was contacted by a search firm seeking candidates for the Edina superintendent post.

“I need to be clear that I did not seek this out. My wife, Kathy, and I are extremely happy in Waconia and love it here,” Devine said.

Devine has held the top administrator position since 2014, when he was hired to replace Dr. Nancy Rajanen after her retirement. Before coming to Waconia, Devine was a middle school principal in the Litchfield school district.

Under Devine’s watch, the district rolled out a successful building initiative that saw the number of elementary schools in the district grow from two to three, and is overseeing the building swap between the middle and high schools.

“As hard as it is to think of the potential of leaving Waconia, I am both flattered and extremely honored that I have been identified as having the skillset to potentially be Edina’s next superintendent,” Devine said.

The first round of interviews with the Edina hiring committee will be Feb. 28 to March 3. Finalists will be interviewed March 6 to 9.

“It is very important to me to not have this affect the wonderful relationships I have made with everyone here – parents students, staff and community members. You all mean the world to me,” Devine said. “I still bleed purple and love being a Wildcat!”