DuBois Area School Board fills open seat by Glenn Schuckers
The DuBois Area School Board held a special meeting on January 3, 2002, at the Administrative Center for the purpose of interviewing and then appointing a candidate to the open seat in District A. Three people had applied for the open seat which was created when no one ran in the past election. Deidre Brown, Elliot Gelfand and David Schwab had all filed the necessary paperwork and were present for interviews before the Board voted on one.
Board president Larry Salone explained the process and said he would read the prepared questions to each candidate allowing other members to listen and take notes on the answers. The candidates were then interviewed in a number of areas designed to give board members the information they would need to make a decision.
Only one candidate was interviewed at a time while the other two waited in another room. Following their interview each candidate remained in the room so he or she could hear the others’ responses.
The areas of questions included one asking about the candidate’s background, involvement in the community and what experiences would be useful as a board member. Another area of questions centered on the candidates’ experiences in the area of finance and budget, while a third asked about the candidates’ views on the roles of extra-curricular activities in a school. Other questions centered on what each candidate’s opinion was about what the board had done well in the past few years, the relationship between the board and a superintendent, how the candidate would respond to problems with staff, personnel or buildings, and finally how the candidate would go about representing the entire community in including all 80,000 residents, staff, special needs students and parents.
After all three candidates had finished their interview, the board was open to discussion by the members of their impressions. During this phase of the process each of the board members said that they were happy that three such well-qualified community members had expressed their interest in serving on the board and further that each one could be a valuable addition to the current eight member Board.
Following this discussion, Salone opened the floor to nominations to fill the seat. Sam Armagost nominated David Schwab and Charlie Watt nominated Elliot Gelfand. A roll call vote had Armagost, Dustin Dodd, Gilbert Barker and Salone cast votes to elect Schwab, while Watt, Wachob and Gilga cast their votes for Gelfand. By a vote of four to three (member Jeff Madinger was medically excused from the meeting) Schwab was selected to serve on the board. His term will extend to the end of December 2023.