Quintin Shepherd, a candidate for Lake County Schools superintendent, has withdrawn his name for consideration, according to the district.

The former candidate is superintendent of the 8,000-student Linn-Mar (Iowa) Community School District, according to a press release from the district.

Shepherd notified Lake County of his decision through the district’s consultant, Ray & Associates.

According to the press release, Shepherd said he made the decision to withdraw “with a heavy heart."

A local newspaper in Shepherd’s hometown, The Gazette, reported that Shepherd wrote in an email that his “commitment has always been to the Linn-Mar Community School District. I am passionate about our schools and this community. While I was honored to participate in the search, my unquestionable commitment is to Linn-Mar. This is why I chose to withdraw.”

Several School Board members previously expressed concern about Shepherd and another fellow candidate, Jerry Wilson, because they have worked at significantly smaller school districts than Lake County.

In particular, School Board member Kristi Burns previously said Shepherd made a lot of unilateral decisions without the board.

"I ran across the time he cancelled Halloween," Burns said. "I was concerned about the fact it was not brought before the board or community."

The remaining six candidates are:

• Bob Anderson, a deputy superintendent at Fulton County Schools in Atlanta, Georgia, who has served in several executive roles over the past four and a half years. Anderson was area superintendent for the Northeast Learning Community in Fulton, supervising 22 schools with 22,900 students. In a letter accompanying his application, he said he was able "to maintain the highest levels of performance in the district ...; including an overall graduation rate of 91.5 percent, an average SAT score of 1,682 and 6,062 Advanced Placement exams with an 81.5 percent pass rate."

• Jerry Wilson, superintendent of Worcester County Public Schools in Berlin, Maryland, for the past four years. According to his resume, Wilson's school system was recognized for two years for "best school system performance" in the state of Maryland on the 2015-16 Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers results.

• Mark Mullins, deputy superintendent at Brevard County Schools in Melbourne Beach since July. Citing his work as area superintendent in Brevard, Mullins wrote in his cover letter that VAM scores increased, "and graduation rates exceeded state average."

• Diane Kornegay, deputy superintendent at Clay County School District in Melrose since June 2015. According to Kornegay's resume, she has 30 years of experience in school and district administration in two Florida school districts, where she "improved student achievement and increased graduation rates within all student subgroups."

• Brennan Asplen, deputy superintendent for St. Johns County School District. According to his resume, he "led four departments whose collaborative efforts made the St. Johns County School District the No. 1 academically performing district in the state for the past eight years. He also increased the graduation rate to 91 percent."

• Verna Ruffin, superintendent for Jackson-Madison County Schools in Jackson, Tennessee. According to Ruffin's resume, she "created a Middle School Academic Academy school-within-a-school model enhancing educational outcomes for students. She also created an early college high school."

The superintendent candidates will be interviewed by each board member in private meetings on Dec. 13,  At 6 p.m. that evening, the candidates will answer questions publicly from the board. Then at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 14, the School Board will convene to narrow down the finalists.

The following day, Dodd and School Board member Stephanie Luke will visit the home districts of the top applicants.

There will be a second round of interviews on Dec. 19, 20 and 21. Each evening there will be a reception, followed by additional opportunity for the public to provide input.

The board will have a final meeting at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 22 to pick the superintendent.