1.What made you want to run for school board?
First of all, thank you, Ella and Kayla, for giving school board candidates the chance to answer these questions. It is so important for students to be well-informed about elections that impact them.
I decided to run for school board because I care about making sure each Fort Thomas student receives a well-rounded K-12 education and is prepared to positively contribute to society after graduation, no matter where they land. I have two kids in the district and my niece and nephew will be FTIS students soon, so I have a vested interest in the school community.
I also have a range of experience that has prepared me for school board service. I have been elected to Woodfill’s School-Based Decision Making council for four years, I have served on the PTO board for seven years, and I’ve volunteered for the schools in many capacities, so I have a proven track record of learning the ropes from the ground up and working hard. In my day job, I am an attorney and run the mediation program at an appeals court, which means that I help people tangled up in lawsuits find common ground and reach an agreement rather than have the judges decide the case. These professional skills would be valuable as a board member.
2. If you were elected, how could you help the district?
I will work to provide students with the tools needed for individual success, preserve the tradition of academic and athletic excellence that characterizes the Fort Thomas schools, and build respectful, collaborative relationships across the community. I would do that by strengthening opportunities for each student, supporting the district’s educators and support staff, and engaging with the community consistently.
3. What differences could you make to the community?
I am the only candidate running who lives on the Woodfill side of town. So that means around 1/3 of the community does not currently have representation on the school board and won’t unless I am elected. This would make an immediate difference to the community because there would be full community representation.
Another difference I can make is to listen to concerns, carefully weigh all sides, and work to build bridges in the community. This is a particular skill of mine. When people feel truly heard, this can make a world of difference in reaching consensus. I see this daily in my career and in my personal relationships.
4. Why do you think you should be elected?
I think I should be elected because a five-member board must be able to work together toward common goals, even if their perspectives are different. I have years of experience in working collaboratively and respectfully with others to reach agreements, in my career and in my volunteer service to the schools. I have proven over the years that I am always willing to pitch in, work hard, and thoughtfully consider everyone’s viewpoint.
5. What is your vision for education in this community?
I will work to strengthen the range of opportunities that students have in the district, whether it be the number of class options, athletic programs, cultural arts, or club offerings. This is particularly important as students approach graduation and consider their next steps. Instead of guessing what you might like to do after high school or which profession you might be best suited for, you can try a class or club for a quarter or two. It might spark your interest to pursue it further or you may decide, “Hey, that’s not really for me.” This sort of trial and error is crucial for kids and teens, and it can save time and money in the long run. Take it from someone who changed her college major halfway through! Also, not everyone has the same strengths and weaknesses. I will work to ensure that any deficits are identified and remedied so that all students are set up for success.