CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- A new principal has been picked for Charlottesville High School.

Charlottesville City Schools announced Wednesday that Dr. Justin Malone will be returning to CHS, effective July 1.

According to a release, Malone’s selection comes after an extensive search process that involved a diverse panel of staff, parents and current students.

Malone has worked for CCS since 2013 when he took up the post as the assistant principal at CHS, and has been serving as the principal at Jackson-Via Elementary School since 2017.

"We are delighted to welcome Dr. Malone back to CHS," said Dr. Royal A. Gurley, Jr., Superintendent of Charlottesville City Schools. "In a strong field of applicants, he stood out for his administrative and interpersonal skills, combined with his deep understanding of our community and commitment to academic excellence."

The release says Malone’s education career started in Greene County where he filled various roles, such as a special education coordinator and an assistant principal at the elementary and middle school levels.

During his previous stint at CHS, the graduation rate went up 14 points, and his leadership is considered instrumental in the implementation of several initiatives across the division.

“I am honored to return to Charlottesville High School,” said Malone. “I know what makes CHS such a special and thriving school and I am committed to sharing with our students, our staff, and our community what makes CHS a safe and successful place. My previous experience at CHS and all of my years working in Charlottesville City Schools have me prepared and excited to begin this important work.”

Malone is succeeding Rashaad Pitt who announced his resignation in November.