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Who does Amber Dixon trust?

This week, when Amber Dixon headed to Saratoga Springs for a superintendents' conference, she had to designate someone to leave in charge of the district while she was gone.

Smith Her choice: Barb Smith, the CFO.

"You have to look at who you rely on," Dixon said. "I made the choice I was most comfortable with for the district."

In other words, she apparently wasn't comfortable with any of the people her predecessor tended to rely on.

When former Superintendent James Williams left Buffalo, three people seemed most frequently tapped to fill in for him: former Deputy Superintendent Folasade Oladele, Lead Community Superintendent Mark Frazier, and Associate Superintendent Will Keresztes.

Oladele, of course, wasn't an option for Dixon, seeing as she left town a year before her contract ended.

Frazier seems to be under something of a cloud until the district wraps up its investigation into Debbie Buckley's situation, among other things.

And Keresztes was the only other candidate besides Dixon to step forward to apply for the interim superintendency. He also has a history that includes a month-long suspension related to a cheating scandal several years ago in the school where he was principal. (Keresztes is quick to note that a district investigation found he was not responsible for the cheating, or even aware of it.)

Will Dixon's choice of Smith as acting superintendent prove to be significant in the long run?

We should find out in the next several weeks.

Dixon has said we should start to see some changes in central office before the end of 2011.

- Mary Pasciak

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