Candidates run for Estacada School Board
Estacada School District constituents will vote for five board positions in the May election.
Rosa Martinez is running unopposed for re-election in Zone 1, William Johnston is running unopposed for re-election in Zone 2, Rochelle Shibahara is running for re-election in Zone 4 and Joe Behrman is running for re-election in Zone 5. In Zone 3, Helena Snyder is running for re-election and newcomer John Walper has also entered the race.
Shibahara, a product manager at Nike, was first elected to the board in 2017 and is proud of the school district's flexibility and responsiveness during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I want to continue to work with people on the board and in the district to meet our strategic plan goals of being a world class school district," she said. "It's important to figure out how to do a better job of listening. With technology, we're able to communicate out, but we could do a better job of getting input."
Behrman, who is the owner of M2 Integration in Estacada, has served on the board since 2017. He cited the reopening of schools for in-person learning and clean financial audits as several elements of the district that he's proud of.
"The ultimate goal is to get kids college and career ready," he said. "As board members, we want policy, budget and a superintendent aligned with that vision."
Walper hopes to serve on the school board to give back to the community. Prior to retiring, he worked for companies such as Xerox, Proto Tools and Stanley Hydraulic Tools and thinks his experience in business would make him a good fit for the board.
"I want to be sure our children go back to basics. Math, English, writing and true history," he said, adding that he would like to see students return to in-person learning full time. "Our schools are very much community minded. We're a rural community, and I don't want to see that change."
Johnston was re-elected to the board in 2019 after being appointed the year before to fill a vacancy. He works in virtual education and is the vice president of school partnerships and compliance at Stride, Inc.
Snyder, who works as a private investigator, was appointed to the board in 2020 to fill a vacancy.
"There's not anything (that the district has done) that I'm not proud of," she said, noting that the board can best serve the community through transparency. "I'm pleased that we were able to open our doors so soon. When there is a positive (COVID) case, everything has been handled smoothly. This has all been happening from a proactive perspective. It's not reactive, and I truly appreciate that."
Martinez was also appointed in 2020 to fill a vacancy and owns a small construction business.
"I want to be seen as a resource for parents," she said. "I want to be one of the connections between the board and community, and promote high quality education for all."
She also hopes to honor the diversity in the community and consider the different languages families may speak.
"Our community is changing, and diversification is increasing. I want to be sure to look at that lens," she said.
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