NUSD Race: "Why Voters Should Pick Me"

THE NATOMAS BUZZ | @natomasbuzz

THE NATOMAS BUZZ invited the 10 candidates running for Natomas Unified school board to participate in a series of articles wherein they answer questions submitted by readers.

To wrap up this 12-part series, the candidates requested an opportunity to answer, “Why should voters pick you?”

Here are the answers submitted by the deadline, in the order they were received:


One word INTEGRITY. The teachers, staff and labor groups all chose to endorse me for this very reason. I made no promises to anyone. I spoke the truth to all groups that I have spoke to. I will do only what is best for the students, staff, workers, and parents of Natomas. I will listen to every question, comment and concern and make the best possible choice for all involved. I will not make any decision without finding every piece of information. I started this campaign by stating that I wanted to be the voice of the people. I have not changed from that. I want what’s best for all of the children in Natomas. We can build something great in this district, but we need people on the board that we can trust. Vote for me and you will have someone you can trust. Thank you for your support.


I’ve spent lots of time learning about our district through conversations with parents, teachers, students, and anyone who wants to see our community prosper – satisfaction with our current board is at an all-time low. Elect me, and I’ll fight to keep resources in the classroom to give each and every child in Natomas a world-class education. Being a legislative analyst has prepared me to tackle our toughest budget problems; I’ll work closely with the community to reach district goals. I’ll be an unwavering advocate and friend to every person in Natomas, and will enact needed reforms to increase board transparency. I’ll seek real alternatives for students trapped in unfortunate educational circumstances. We’ve seen slight gains with the current administration, but our district is still in bad shape. The board needs an independent voice and ally to our parents. I’ll be that person. I humbly ask for your vote.


There are no words to describe what an amazing experience this campaign has been. I am humbled and honored by the support I received over the last couple months. I already knew Natomas was a great community and now I believe it tenfold. I have talked to so many engaged parents, students, and community members that I am confident NUSD has a lot to look forward to if we work together towards common goals. I have always listened to the concerns of parents and students and will continue to do so. School districts across the state contact me for help in my role at the California School Boards Association. I’m a resource to districts statewide; help me put my 10 years of experience in public education to work in Natomas by casting a Vote 4 Vina on Election Day!


My service on the NUSD board is grounded in my passion and advocacy for our schools. My passion and advocacy actually commenced many years ago; in my son’s classrooms, on school site committees, as an elementary classroom teacher, as a district manager, in legislative hearings, as a member of the Board of Directors for the California School Board Association, and as a department chair/professor of education at CSU, Sacramento. Consequently, my thirty-two years of experience in the field of education has provided me with a broad understanding of local, state and federal educational issues. I want to continue serving so that I can help students achieve district and state standards; continue to provide support for teachers to meet the needs of a diverse student population; and, help strengthen the link between parents and teachers. Public education is not just a task or job for me, it is my passion and my life’s work.


As Election Day approaches, my thoughts turn to the many people I’ve met, spoken and worked with throughout the course of my campaign. Interactions with students, parents, teachers, staff, and community members have reaffirmed my belief that the highest moral approach to public education requires collective involvement from the very beginning of any process that ends with votes by a given school board. It’s the only way we can truly reflect the vision of Natomas residents. The true heroes today are district teachers, staff and parents who’ve had to shoulder unnecessary burdens in an atmosphere of contempt from the powers that be. It is THEY who have made academic achievements possible and personally sacrificed so our students’ needs might be met. I want to take this moment to show some love and respect for them. More importantly, I hope you do as well – when you cast your vote on Tuesday.


As a parent and business owner, I am humbled by the opportunity to serve our diverse community, and I promise to work my hardest to improve our schools and expand academic opportunities for our children. As a tireless advocate for the rights of parents and students for over 16 years, I know the challenges of our public education system well. As the chair/member of NUSD’s English Learner Advisory Committee and president of parent groups in 3 schools, I’ve successfully given parents a voice and obtained results for students, programs, and schools. With your help, I am ready to fight for a better future. I will be transparent and accountable to residents who entrust me their children and tax dollars. Our community needs more responsible financial management, expanded college and career opportunities, fewer barriers for parents and community involvement, and relentless focus on academic priorities that support teachers and students.


When elected to the Natomas School board, the district was on the brink of bankruptcy with a leadership team in disarray. I have worked hard to demand accountability from administrators and bring fiscal solvency back to the Natomas School District. Today funds are still limited, but through a common sense approach, I will continue to find solutions that best serve our kids, while tackling hard fiscal realities. In my time on Natomas School Board I have worked to improve math and science programs, as well as to maintain arts and music programs. Natomas Unified School District is now on the right track for continued improvements. NUSD now has two California Distinguished Schools will soon add a third, academic achievement is growing, graduation rates are increasing and fiscal stability is the expectation. I am proud that my children attend NUSD and I look forward to proudly continuing my serve on the board.

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