The Crookston Public School District introduces Blake Stoltman as the new Business Director, replacing Laura Lyczewski who retired after 20 years in the role.
Stoltman, an Argyle native, graduated from Stephen-Argyle Central High School before attending Minnesota State University-Moorhead and later receiving a master’s degree in Business and Administration from NDSU.
Stoltman explained that becoming a business manager in a school district was intriguing because it was an opportunity to serve a community and students. Previously, Stoltman served as a banker, and he believes handling financials in a school district seemed more rewarding.
“This job was intriguing because it allows me to provide a service to the school,” said Stoltman. “This can be educational, and I can give back to the students, over the years, this became more of a passion regarding providing an educational piece of mind from a financial perspective and giving them the best opportunities possible.”
Stoltman shared that his goals while in this position are to provide the best educational experience for the students while avidly looking for grant funding and more opportunities for the district, along with balancing the budget in the best interest of Crookston schools.
Stoltman currently resides in Ada with his wife and four daughters. He explained that the district and location felt like the right fit to start a new career. “I’m inheriting an excellent and well-managed district,” said Stoltman. “Location was a large part of the decision, and after reviewing the financials and visiting with Laura, it felt like a great fit for me with the size of the district and the people I’ve met here.”
Laura Lyzcewski served her last day as the district business manager on November 3 after serving 18 years in that position and has mentored Stoltman during his onboarding process. Stoltman spoke about Laura in high regard and all the help she has offered.
“Laura has been great from day one,” said Stoltman. “She always tells me she will give me any support that I may need at this point. Whenever she offers that, I will take it, so when I have questions, I reach out. Laura was a great business manager, and these are big shoes to fill. I respect that she’s retired, so I’ll do what I can to not have to call her every second because the best way to learn is to try and run through it yourself.”
Stoltman enjoys hobbies such as fishing, hunting, and watching sports outside of work. He specifically enjoys attending NDSU sporting events as he is a season ticket holder.