Deseret News
FILE - A photo of the Utah State Board of Education building. Craig Johnson, an administrator in the New Mexico Lands Office, has declined to accept the position of director of the School Children’s Trust section.

SALT LAKE CITY — Craig Johnson, an administrator in the New Mexico State Land Office, has declined the position of director of the School Children’s Trust Section.

The State School Board offered Johnson the job last week, with the understanding that salary negotiations were ongoing.

Emilie Wheeler, spokeswoman for the Utah State Board of Education, said Johnson "has been presented with some new opportunities at his current workplace and opted to stay in New Mexico."

The process to find a successor to former director Tim Donaldson returns to the School and Institutional Trust Lands board of trustees nominating committee, which will determine next steps in recruiting and hiring. Meanwhile, Paula Plant will remain interim director of the section.

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Donaldson was director of Utah's School Children's Trust from 2013 until Aug. 4, when he suddenly resigned. The State School Board accepted Donaldson's resignation the same day but did not comment except to say it was a personnel matter.

The School Children’s Trust Section administers the School LAND Trust Program statewide. The section is within the offices of the Utah State Board of Education. The section oversees activities of the land management and fund investment trustees. It also is responsible for training and supporting school districts and schools as they train school community councils.