WESTPORT—Showered by compliments and gifts from the Westport School District community, Superintendent of Schools Elliott Landon delivered a heartfelt goodbye at his final Board of Education meeting saying his 17 years in Westport have "been one hell of a great time."

Landon was given a plaque and a certificate of recognition from the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education among numerous other gifts and awards.

"Dr. Landon has never taken education lightly. In my experience, he has always put the students and staff as top priorities," School Board Member Mark Mathias said.

"He’s been consistent and clear in his actions. Dr. Landon is not one to shrink from controversy. He’s always willing to take on a challenge that many of us do not see initially as necessary—such as full-day kindergarten…," he added.

PTA Co-President Sue Calger said "We have been so fortunate to have you over the last 17 years."

"I know wholeheartedly that you’ve always done what’s best for the kids of Westport. I feel really lucky that all of my children graduated k-12 through the Elliott Landon era. I’ll miss you, we’ll all miss you," Board Member Brett Aronow said.

Board Member Jeannie Smith, recalled her child’s baseball game where Landon was sitting next to her (Landon’s grandson was also playing in the game) and grabbed a foul ball out of the air—the crowd erupted in laughter.

Karen Kleine, a member of the board, tabbed Landon as "the best at what you do."

Landon thanked all members of the community and said that people, many of whom he hired, make the Westport School System what it is. He also thanked the Board because they "always let Elliott be Elliott."

@chrismmarquette/ cmarquette@bcnnew.com