BOARD: Trustees all elected, too
Several weeks ago The Press published an editorial about the School District 271 board of trustees. In the editorial you noted that four of the five trustees were appointed. This is a true statement, but I feel it misleads the casual reader to believe that none of the four were elected. This is as misleading as the attorney who asks the witness, "When did you quit beating your wife?" The op-ed piece also suggested that board members resign such that the remaining members could appoint a like-minded trustee. Nice theory, but let's look at the facts.
Late fall of 2001 Herb Cheeley resigned from the board during a meeting. The board called for applications - none were received by the deadline. The board again publicly requested applications. Two applied and were interviewed in public in front of a Press reporter in December 2001. The applicants were Sid Fredrickson and Travis Burgan. The board chose me. I was sworn in January 2002. I had to file for election in May 2002. There was no challenger and I was declared the victor. In May 2005 I ran against a challenger and won. I also ran against a challenger in 2008 and again won. Because of the election consolidation law passed by the Idaho legislature in the 2010 session, trustee terms were extended to four years and those elected in 2008 had their term extended until June 2013 - five years.
In July 2004 Edie Brooks moved out of her trustee zone and was required to resign. The board publicly interviewed two applicants; Diane Zipperer and Steve Widmyer. The majority of the board selected Ms. Zipperer. Ms. Zipperer faced a challenger and was elected in May 2008.
Wanda Quinn chose not to seek re-election in 2006. Edie Brooks lived in that trustee zone and ran against an opponent and won election. She was re-elected in 2009.
In August 2008, Christie Wood resigned citing that being a trustee on two boards was too demanding. Four candidates applied. Jill Neal, Bill Hemenway, Greg Rod and Jeremy Boggess were interviewed in public and the board majority favored Mr. Hemenway, who faced a challenger in 2009 and won election. His term is up in 2011.
Finally, Vern Newby resigned in June 2010. Vern could have remained on the board and would have faced re-election in 2011; a four-year term. He committed to his family to only serve one three-year term when he ran against an opponent in 2007. The new law changed his term. Three candidates were publicly interviewed in June 2010. They were Stephanie Powers, Angie Phillips and Pat House. On a secret ballot the board chose Ms. Powers. She will face election in 2011.
Now you know "The rest of the story."
H. SID FREDRICKSON
Trustee, Zone 5