Steve moved to Old Lyme in 2003, and has served on the BOE since December 2009. A Virginia Tech graduate, Steve works as a consultant in construction and property management. Steve is proud to have served on a Board that has insisted on raising educational standards with minimal annual budget increases. On the human resources committee, he advocated offering employees an expanded health plan at a reduced cost. As Chairman of the facilities committee, he promoted an organic solution to the track’s field drainage problem – which proved not only environmentally friendly, but also $150,000 less expensive than the proposed alternative.
Name the three characteristics (one word for each) that you believe will make you an effective member of the board of education? Expand on the one that you feel should be most significant to the voters.
Experienced, inquisitive, collaborative
While all the characteristics above are desirable, I believe that experience should be a significant consideration for voters in this election. In the next 4 years, the Board will be facing the challenges of declining enrollment, introduction and evaluation of Common Core State Standards, implementation of teacher evaluations, and a never ending stream of State and Federal Mandates. As a member serving for the past 4 years, I know these issues in-depth. In addition to BOE experience, I am the only candidate that offers professional experience in building and facilities management. After spending over $50 million modernizing our facilities, it is crucial to protect our investment by electing a candidate with relevant, direct experience in facilities management.
What do you think will be the biggest challenge facing Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools in the next four years?
The biggest challenge facing Region 18 (and most other districts), is managing the effects of declining enrollment on educational programming. Region 18 has always placed a high value on educating our students, and has strived to offer a diverse and fulfilling experience to all our students. Offering Mandarin Chinese, AP courses, robotics, virtual high school, and an extensive Arts curriculum, are all examples of our commitment to these goals. The challenge for the next Board will be to work collectively and creatively with each other and the administration to search for ways to keep or enhance the educational experience of our students while living within budgetary constraints that will inevitably exist. The Board must remain committed to balancing the need for extensive program offerings while effectively managing the budget to ensure that our community remains a desirable place for all families to live.
If you could achieve one objective — and only one — during your term on the Region 18 Board of Education, what would it be?
The one objective that I would like to accomplish while serving on the Board would be to ensure that our students graduate with the necessary tools and life skills required to commence their journey in life as productive, well-rounded members of society. I believe every person has a passion. Our schools should provide the necessary resources for our students to freely explore and find their passion in life. As Confucius wrote “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” I’d like all our children to be so fortunate!