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Kelly Smith, Published December 07 2009

School boards gear up for elections

It’s six months away, but people are already preparing for June school elections when a majority of Fargo and West Fargo school board members will be up for re-election.

Recently, parent Kristen Wallman kicked off her campaign for one of five Fargo School Board positions that will be on the ballot June 8.

“I have a passion for education and kids’ issues,” she said this week. “I just feel like I have a lot of skills that I could bring to (the school board).”

On the Fargo School Board, board members:

  • Laura Carley and Dan Fremling are leaning toward not running after more than a decade on it.

  • Don Faulkner is undecided, while Dinah Goldenberg and Rick Steen plan to run for re-election.

  • Robin Nelson, Paul Meyers, Jim Johnson and John Strand aren’t up for re-election this year.

    On the West Fargo School Board:

  • Board president Tom Gentzkow is not running for re-election after 10 years on the board, saying: “It’s been a good run.”

  • Veteran board members Karen Nitzkorski and Angela Korsmo plan to run again while Duane Hanson is undecided as of yet.

  • Board members Ben Koppelman, Kay Kiefer and Patti Stedman aren’t up for re-election.

    Fargo board members receive $12,000 a year, while West Fargo board members receive $3,000 a year. Both are four-year terms.

    The deadline to file for public office for the June 8 election is April 9.

    It may seem like a ways off, but Wallman, a mother of two Fargo elementary students, has already attended several recent Fargo School Board meetings to observe the process.

    “I feel like I would be an asset to the school board,” said Wallman, a volunteer for the Region V Children’s Services Coordinating Committee and co-founder of the Red River Valley Asperger Network. “I think I would be a great voice for people who don’t have the representation that they should have.”

    Readers can reach Forum reporter Kelly Smith at (701) 241-5515