has a new boss.
Longtime Tulsa Trail Principal Joseph Memoli came out of retirement to helm the school with an interim tag in August. He handed the wheel to Dr. Joanne Mullane, a former curriculum supervisor, on Friday.
Memoli spent 19 years as the school's head before retiring in 2004. Memoli returned when Jeff Nesnay, his former successor, retired in June.
Mullane, in her sixth year in Hopatcong, appeared to be groomed for the position. Since Memoli didn't work Fridays, she covered that day for him all year, in addition to covering for absent principals at other district schools. The opening Mullane leaves at curriculum supervisor won't be filled.
Mullane said she learned a lot from Memoli. Memoli wasn't immediately available for comment.
"I am very fortunate that Mr. Memoli has had so many years of experience at Tulsa Trail School and I've been able to work with him side-by-side," she said Thursday. "I soaked all of that in. And with my diverse background at the district level and with technology and assessment and in curriculum, I feel like I can shoot for the stars and give it my all and make Tulsa Trail an excellent school."
Mullane, an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University and New Jersey City University, earned an education doctorate at Nova Southeastern University after gaining a master's at William Paterson University and a bachelor's from the College of New Jersey. She became a Hopatcong curriculum supervisor in 2005. Before that, she was a supervisor of technology in Cranford for 11 years.
Schools Superintendent Dr. Charles Maranzano said in a release that Mullane was "the ideal candidate to lead Tulsa Trail into the future. She brings a strong educational and technological background to this important position.”
"Dr. Mullane has been developing curriculum for the elementary schools in our district for the past two years,” Maranzano said, "and has a complete overview of what constitutes excellent teaching and learning for children.”
Memoli, who spent his retirement teaching at Fairleigh Dickinson University-Madison and heading a non-profit organization, jumped at the opportunity to return to Tulsa Trail last year.
Memoli, a East Stroudsburg, Pa., resident, began his education career in Sparta before he came to Hopatcong in 1984.
Memoli spent two post-retirement years as an adjunct supervisor at FDU-Madison, aiding the teaching program. Then he became director of the East Stroudsburg Community Alliance, a non-profit focused on revitalizing downtown East Stroudsburg. He resigned from that role after two years for personal reasons.
Tulsa Trail Secretary Maureen O'Hare said Memoli sent her an email early Friday morning saying to call his cell phone if anybody needed help.
"We're going to miss him," O'Hare said.