PICKENS — Dr. Danny Merck, principal at Daniel High School, will begin his duties at the helm of the School District of Pickens County on May 1.
Superintendent Dr. Kelly Pew accepted a similar position in Rock Hill. Pew’s contract, based on a vote by the board last Thursday, will terminate April 30.
“It really is a great opportunity to follow Dr. Pew, who’s done such a great job leading this district,” Merck said following the announcement. “I grew up in this community and it means a lot to have the chance to make a difference.”
A graduate of Liberty High School, Merck and his wife, Suzanne, and their four children, live and attend school in Pickens County. With over 23 years experience as an educator, Merck also has administrative experience at the district level.
Before taking over as principal at Daniel High School, Merck served as Assistant Superintendent of Administration, overseeing principals, finance, alternative education, food services, and student services.
A statement released by the school board spoke highly of Merck’s community involvement.
“Dr. Merck has been a very involved participant in numerous civic and professional organizations in Pickens and Anderson counties for many years and is excited about becoming more involved in all aspects of community and school life throughout Pickens County,” Board Chairman Alex Saitta said in a statement released Thursday.
According to the board, Merck will receive a salary of $120,000 per year in compensation. The four-year contract was approved unanimously by the board.
With the transition from one superintendent to another taking place in the middle of spring semester, the board voted to allow Merck to operate as superintendent-elect until May 1, where “he will perform any and all duties as may be deemed appropriate and agreed upon by the Board.”
Merck said he was enthusiastic about the future, following the approval of his contract.
“I’m ready to get started,” he said.