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The Columbia County Spotlight's pre-election mailbag contains support for candidates across the spectrum.

Klobes is well-qualified for school board seat

We have some wonderful people running for Scappoose School Board this year, but I am particularly impressed with Gwynn Klobes. Her multi-generational experience with the educational system in our district, and her personal achievements are stunning.

Not many have the internal fortitude to put themselves through college while working full-time. Gwynn then went on to a position at the University of Portland tasked with advising students in career development and how to plan for a successful transition into the workforce. She will have the experience and insight regarding curriculum and where best to invest our resources to make sure every student is successful no matter what their goals are after graduation.

I hope you will join me in voting for Gwynn Klobes for Scappoose School Board.

Josette Hugo, Scappoose

Incumbent board member says vote Williams for PCC

Reiko Mia Williams is the best choice for our students and community.

A dedicated educator and transformational leader throughout the Portland metropolitan area, she has a diversity of experience as a social worker, a college advisor at Portland Community College, and a school administrator. These are exactly the experiences and qualities that the PCC board of directors needs, and why Williams should be the next director of Zone 7, which serves Hillsboro, Forest Grove, North Plains, Cornelius, Gaston, Vernonia and Banks.

As the current Zone 7 board director, I recognize the value of having a deep understanding of education and connection to the community you serve, and Williams' work demonstrates that.

Williams' experience as a leader in public schools makes her deeply aware of the vital relationship PCC has with local K-12 school districts. She knows that to rebuild the economic vitality of our community and workforce, we need to leverage partnerships with businesses, local government, and schools throughout the metropolitan area to close opportunity gaps and create living-wage jobs for all Oregon of residents.

As Oregon recovers from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, Williams' professional and lived experiences will be a crucial asset to creating an equitable response to support the most marginalized students and communities.

Williams' leadership and diverse experience will strengthen the PCC board and deserves your vote this May 18.

Alexander Díaz Rios

Zone 7 Director, Portland Community College

In support of Kristi Wilson for PCC board

I have known Kristi Wilson for nearly a decade, first as an integral part of the Hillsboro School District's Career and College Pathways work and now as a workforce development manager for the City of Hillsboro. The common theme throughout this time is her ability to open doors and create accessibility for students.

Kristi has supported climate change initiatives and not only understands the importance of having youth voices as part of the process, but makes intentional efforts to include them throughout. I saw this first-hand as she guided the city's Youth Advisory Council during the "Better Way to Bag" initiative to ban the use of single use plastic bags, an initiative I took to the state Legislature for implementation.

She coordinated trips to Salem for youth to engage in the legislative process, and has come to Salem to advocate for Portland Community College funding — specifically for career-technical education. She also has connected students with me to serve as interns, expanding their experience and preparing them to be civic leaders.

With her robust experience in supporting high school students with career and college pathways, and her work supporting adults with skills training and career support to find livable wage careers, Kristi will bring a unique worked and lived perspective to the Portland Community College board.

Join me on May 18 in voting for Kristi Wilson for the Zone 7 Portland Community College Board of Directors.

Janeen Sollman

State Representative, House District 30

Questioning the purpose of law enforcement

I would like to know what our local law enforcement is doing to prevent a George Floyd incident from happening here. Little small town dictators.

To serve and collect? You should be ashamed. All Lives Matter.

John Werderber, Warren

Scappoose should return Lager to school board

We are writing to encourage support of Phil Lager in the upcoming May election to serve again in the Scappoose School Board.

We have known Phil personally for several years and also went to school with him. Phil has been an active, serving member in our community for decades. He lives, works, and has children in the Scappoose School District.

He has the right character, knowledge, and commitment to continue serving the community again on the School Board. Having two children in school system ourselves, it is important to us that the School Board consist of members like Phil. Members who have a desire for both serving the community and truly value the education of our children.

Please join us in voting for Phil Lager.

Ryan and Stefani Sheldon, Scappoose

Former school board candidate backs Francis

Current school board candidate Summer Hoag is running for election. I do not believe that she is a good choice because her family member is on the board. [Ed. Summer Stutsman-Hoag's husband's uncle, Jim Hoag, currently serves on the Scappoose School Board. His seat is not up for election until 2023.] The board says they need more diversity and having family on the board will not be the right choice when making tough decisions.

That is why I will be voting for Tanya Francis, who has spent time on the budget committee and has attended almost every board meeting. We need someone new on the board who doesn't have family on the board.

Tanya will be a great asset to the school board and will bring some diversity to the board. Summer Hoag would not be a good choice because it is unlikely, she would vote different than a family member.

With that being said, we need a diverse board. As we sit right now, most of our board members are friends, and if Summer is elected it will be friends and family. That is not what we need as a community for our children. We need different ideas and opinions; diversity and we need our board members to challenge each other to come up with the best route for our kids. We don't need friends and family to rubber stamp everything and be part of a club.

Summer Hoag will be pressured into voting the way her family votes and that isn't what we need. We need people to challenge each other and have different ideas.

Summer Hoag is not the right choice for your children. Vote for Tanya Francis.

Steve Kreins, Scappoose

'Anti-racist' education initiatives are communist

"We must be ready to employ trickery, deceit, law-breaking, withholding and concealing truth … We can and must write in a language which sows among the masses hate, revulsion, and scorn toward those who disagree with us." — Vladimir Lenin

The above quote sounds more like today's American political parties than from the father of communism over 100 years ago. Yet between network news and social media, our airwaves are blistering white hot with the foul stench of lies from both the far left and right.

As if policing and border security problems aren't bad enough, now the far left is pushing communism taught in our public schools under the disguise of "Critical Race Theory" and "Culturally Relevant Teaching;" they just don't have the courage to use the c-word. In addition, the Oregon Department of Education is encouraging math teachers to utilize "Pathway to Math Equity MicroCourse" to dismantle racism in their math classes. Really?

I have a degree in accounting, worked alongside the Government Accounting Office during a Senate budget investigation, and taught electronics in a military trade school. CRT or whatever they want to call it is pure communism, and one and one is always two.

Joe Turner, Columbia City

Voting for three to Scappoose school board seats

Experience and knowledge are important when sitting on any kind of board. As Scappoose responds to the budget ramifications of the pandemic, it is imperative that the decision-making body has those skills to hit the ground running.

We are voting for Summer Hoag not because of her last name but the actual experience that she brings to the table through the vast time she has spent volunteering at every level in the school district, including helping to chaperone a middle school Washington, D.C., trip. Anyone that has chaperoned a field trip can agree that herding cats is easier than taking 13– to 14-year-olds for six days to the East Coast during the June humidity. Her experience as a pediatric nurse brought a calm demeanor that was helpful every day.

Phil Lager is another volunteer with tremendous experience who has always stepped up to help whenever and wherever needed. As a board member, he has always been approachable and can be found at almost any sporting event and open to having a conversation about any issue we may be concerned with.

While we don't know Gwynn Klobes, we have watched the online forums and she clearly has the volunteer experience with the school district we feel is vital to understanding the budget as well as her experience working in education to truly understand the needs of staff.

We will be turning in our ballots by May 18 in support of Summer, Phil and Gwynn.

Chris and Wela Negelspach, Scappoose

Port would benefit with Mikelson on board

Sabbath Rain Mikelson should be elected District 5 Columbia County port commissioner on Tuesday, May 18, 2021.

Sabbath has both an educational and experiential background in community organizing and politics. She is able to work with different personalities calling on her sense of calm and compassion. She utilizes fact-based decision-making with county longevity in mind. Sabbath has the time, energy, intellect and dedication needed to serve Columbia County.

It is the duty of the Port of Columbia County, Sabbath feels, to balance the riches of natural recreational attractions with economic and population growth. And the Port has the opportunity to anticipate and plan for that enormous growth in the near future.

Sabbath is interested in making Columbia County an attractive home for industries which can create sustainable, family wage jobs to support the next generation of skilled workers.

In looking at any new business for the Port, Sabbath's priorities are the safety and well-being of the community. She wants to assure citizens that she is looking at much more than jobs. She is looking at lon- term businesses and industries that will put much more into the county than they take out. These qualities and so many more make Sabbath the best choice for Columbia County port commissioner.

Georgiana Gordon, Yankton

Excited to vote Mikelson for port seat

I have the pleasure of knowing Sabbath Mikelson personally and I am excited to vote for her for port commissioner. It is a thrill to vote for someone that has ideals I believe in, instead of voting against someone I disagree with.

Sabbath has done her homework on issues at the port and has already researched upcoming projects and proposals. She has spoken to many community members involved with or impacted by the port's future, and it informs her to make decisions based on facts, not feelings.

Sabbath's ideas would breathe life into the community and would create jobs, support our local downtowns, and sustain and improve our natural recreation sites.

If elected, Sabbath would hit the ground running and quickly flourish in this role. Her natural aptitude for public speaking and investigative research is perfect for this position.

Her goals will be an asset to all of Columbia County, and I hope you will join me in voting for her in the May 18 election.

Emily Miranda, Scappoose

Francis will bring passion to Scappoose school board

I have known Tanya Francis for over a decade. Over the years, I got to know her as a passionate advocate for her children. She has worked endless hours ensuring that her children are taken care of and receive the best education.

Since her children started school in Scappoose School District she has volunteered in the classrooms and around the schools. Assisted with fundraising being active with the Grant Watts Auction as well as working and organizing book fairs for the library.

Due to Tanya's childhood years and the struggles with her own children, I have learned that Tanya has a true passion for education, and wants to see every child succeed in school.

I have no doubt that Tanya would be a solid candidate for Scappoose School Board. Not only has she shown passion for education, but with her legal education and understanding of the law, I feel that she will come with a solid background and knowledge.

Christine Fenter, St. Helens


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