Niagara Gazette —
Though the date for DiFrancesco's departure as principal – he'll remain with the school in a consultant role through the end of the academic year – isn't finalized, what has been determined is his replacement. And his name should be familiar to those who've followed the history of the school.
Ronald Buggs, who has been the superintendent of the Eden Central School District for 16 years, will take over for the retiring principal. But Buggs already served as principal at the high school back in the 1990s, before leaving for Eden.
"Education is demanding anywhere you're at," Buggs said. "It's a demanding field. Niagara Catholic is a good place to be, a place I can have great input with the kids. It's one reason why I'm returning to the school. The time I spent there in the past was outstanding. It truly was the best part of my 33-year career."
Of those 33 years, 19 of them have been in Catholic education, a dedication he said he's excited to once again share. The Town of Tonawanda resident said he's just as passionate about working with youths as the man he's replacing, and hopes his strengths help the school moving into the future without DiFrancesco at the helm.
"I want to bring back this school's strong financial foundation and its enrollment," he said. "Right now there's a lot going on, but there's a lot more that can be happening."
Finding the right candidate to fill DiFrancesco's large shoes was important for those in charge at the Niagara Catholic. Judi Nolan Powell, the chairman of the school's board of trustees, said the search process found 25 potentials from areas all over the country.
But she said the selection committee really wanted someone familiar with Niagara Falls and the struggles the city, and its Catholic high school, faces. Buggs, she said, was the best candidate.
"We had a number of out-of-the-area applicants," she said. "A couple of them were serious candidates. But we were all hopeful we would have a local person, which we do. So we're pleased."