ANDOVER — Philip Conrad will soon be leaving his position as principal of Andover High School to take charge of the Bedford public schools.

The Bedford School Committee voted unanimously to offer him the job and he accepted, the Bedford Citizen reported.

Conrad has led Andover High School since 2015.

"I congratulate Phil on this new position," Andover School Committee Chairman Joel Blumstein said. "I've greatly enjoyed working with Phil these last five years. He's brought much needed stability to Andover High School, has handled some difficult issues with great expertise and has always put the well-being of our students first. He will most certainly be missed."

Conrad, 57, who began his career as an art teacher, faced many challenges during his tenure at Andover High. The firing of a popular coach, Chris Kuchar, leader of the hockey team, as well as controversy surrounding E.J. Perry's coaching of the boy's volleyball team, incurred the wrath of many residents.

Conrad was principal of Rockport Middle/High School for five years before he took charge of Andover High. He was a finalist for the top job at Andover High at around the same time he took the Rockport position.

Before his tenure in Rockport, Conrad was an associate principal at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School. Marinel McGrath, who as superintendent hired Conrad to lead Andover High, worked in the Hamilton-Wenham schools while Conrad was employed there.

Conrad headed Hamilton-Wenham's fine arts department from 1997 to 2006. He started his career at Timberlane Regional High School in Plaistow, New Hampshire as an art teacher. After just one year in that position, he was promoted to arts/humanities coordinator and performed that job for 10 years.

Conrad also taught advanced placement art history and photography at the American International School in Salzburg, Austria. He graduated from University of Massachusetts Amherst cum laude with a bachelor's degree in sculpture and art education.

Conrad has earned two master’s degrees, in management from Lesley College in Cambridge and in educational leadership from Endicott College.

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