4 vie for lone Steamboat School Board vacancy | SteamboatToday.com

4 vie for lone Steamboat School Board vacancy

— Four women have submitted letters of interest for the Steamboat Springs School Board’s lone vacancy since Rebecca Williams resigned June 16.

The School Board will interview the women and choose who to appoint at its special meeting 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the George P. Sauer Human Services Building on Seventh Street. Interviews are set to start at 6:30 p.m., and public comment on the candidates is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

The four who are seeking appointment are Chris Johnson, Tami Havener, Sherri Sweers and Kim Schulz. Each candidate submitted a letter of interest to the School Board and filled out a questionnaire, all of which can be found at the district’s website.

Johnson is a former software engineer, according to her letter of interest, who has four children currently attending school in the district.

“I’d like to be on the School Board because I’m passionate about education, and I see this as a way that I can contribute and give back to the community,” Johnson wrote in an email.

Johnson wrote in her letter that she regularly attends School Board meetings and is involved with the district in a number of ways, including parent information committees, school advisory committees and the district wellness committee.

At the same meeting where Williams resigned, Johnson was given the Friend of Education award, which honors an active volunteer in the district.

Schulz has more than a decade of teaching experience, including at Emerald Mountain School and as a substitute at Soda Creek and Strawberry Park elementary schools, and now owns her own tutoring company.

Now that she’s not actively teaching, Schulz said, she still wants to be involved in education in some form.

“I think it’s important to have the perspective of a classroom teacher,” she said.

If appointed, Schulz said, she doesn’t know yet whether she’d seek election after the term expires.

“My only agenda is to make a decision to impact kids in a positive way,” she said. “If the students we’re making are supported by data and the best for kids then those are the best decisions.”

Steamboat attorney Sweers has made sure she’s staying involved with education in some form throughout much of her own schooling and law career.

She’s been an adjunct business and law professor and also held an adjunct position at Colorado Mountain College’s Alpine Campus in Steamboat before resigning to focus on starting her law firm.

Now that the firm is up and running, she’s looking to get involved with education in the community again. Sweers has two children in the district but has not been formally involved outside of classroom volunteering.

“I come in with a very neutral outlook on pretty much everything,” she said. “I want to go in there with a sense of reason and being able to look at everything with an open mind.”

Sweers said she’d consider running for election if her time on the board went well and she enjoyed it.

Havener has been the executive director of the Family Development Center in Steamboat Springs since 1993 and was on the School Board from 2000 to 2005.

“If they want somebody who can hit the ground running and doesn’t have really a learning curve, I can help out,” Havener said.

Havener said she is willing to fill out the remainder of the term but would not run for election after it expires.

She said she’s worked with thousands of families through the Family Development Center and has a good understanding of the dynamics of working with a board through her own organization’s board and other state boards and groups.

“I’m pretty good at working with a wide variety of people,” Havener said.

Full copies of all documents related to the meeting are available on the district’s website.

To reach Michael Schrantz, call 970-871-4206, email mschrantz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @MLSchrantz

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