Feb 15, 2007

School board elections take on a partisan bent

The filing deadline to run for school board passed Tuesday, and all but one of the five Livingston County school districts will have competitive races.

The book-banning controversy in Howell Public Schools by the anti-gay hate group known as the “LOVE” PAC (Livingston Organization for Values in Education) ensured the races will be antagonistic. The group started early last year, and they actually managed to get one of their candidates elected in May. They are recruiting more candidates. The unprecedented decision by the Livingston County Republic Party to recruit, train and throw their resources behind candidates in what has always been a nonpartisan school board election is also drawing attention to the races. The so-called “LOVE” group is also sure to have its candidates in there somewhere, at least in Howell. I just hope there are some competent, independent candidates in there too fro the community’s sake. Here’s my roundup.

In Howell there are two seats being contested by five candidates, including the incumbent, Jeannine Pratt. Long-time incumbent Ted Parsons, Jr., chose not to run for another four-year term after 12 years. The candidates include, Dan Fondriest, 49, Genoa Township; William T. Harvey, 44, according to sources a strong Republican from Oceola Township; attorney Edwin J. Literski, 52, Genoa Township, a strong Republican; Pratt, 46, City of Howell, and Douglass Moore, 54, from Oceola Township.

Brighton Area Schools will have a healthy race with eight candidates vying for the two open seats. The good news is that incumbent Miles Vieau did not file. He’s a member of the Livingston County Republic Party’s executive committee, and he’s responsible for recruiting Republic candidates for the nonpartisan school board races.
Here are the candidates,
Wesley R. Armbruster, 61, of Green Oak Township; Jared Geist, 24, a law student at Michigan State University from Genoa Township; Irene Besancon, 62, Brighton Township and a Republican-recruited candidate; Patricia Bradley, 50, Brighton Township; Winnie Garrett, 60, Genoa Township; Beth Minert, 57, Green Oak Township; Gregory Rassel, 47 a Genoa Township Republican; and Keith Vanhentenryck, 51, Green Oak Township.

The race in Fowlerville Community Schools is uncontested. This has to be the best-run district in the county, and one reason is incumbent President Mike Brown, who is running again, and the other is Superintendent Ed Alverson. The new board member for the seat vacated by long-time, dedicated incumbent Elaine Esch is Sheila Burkhardt, 41, of Iosco Township.

In Pinckney Community Schools, three people have filed for two seats, including both incumbents. Running is incumbent Anne Colone, 59, Hamburg Township, and apparently the first lady of Hell, Michigan by virtue of being the wife of the unofficial mayor of Hell, Incumbent Michelle Crampo, 45 of Putnam Township; and Jason Reifschneider, 24, Pinckney.

At Hartland Consolidated Schools there is one seat up of election, and the candidates are incumbent Elsie McPherson-Brown, 53 of Oceola Township; and Dennis M. Tierney, 44, a Republican from Hartland Township.


Anonymous said...

School board elections have always been partisan- it is just now we have a 2-party system!

Communications guru said...

How do you figure? School board elections in Michigan have not been partisan, at least in the 13 years or so. What does the two-party system have to do with anything? There are more than two political parties.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if Jared Geist, a candidate in the Brighton Area Schools race, was Saul Anuzis' driver during the 2006 election cycle.

Communications guru said...

I have no idea, but his name sounds very familiar. However, I can't place it.

Progressive said...

Good information. How do you know the republicans are republicans? And who are the democrats so we know who to vote for?

Jared Geist said...

lol, No, I was just Saul Anuzis's driver.

As far as my name sounding familiar, I clicked on your name, and the Mike McGonegal blog came up. I am an Eagle Scout, and remember a Mike McGonegal from Brighton's Boy Scout Troop 350 from way back in the day. Could this be where you remember me from?

At any rate, www.jaredgeist.com will be up and running soon, but if anybody has any questions for me in the meantime, please feel free to shot an email over to JaredGeist@gmail.com

Communications guru said...

Thanks for the info Mr. Geist, and welcome to the blog. Saul Anuzis has a driver? That’s an amazing piece of information. Why would he even need a driver? Does he have an entourage too? Obviously, you guys have way too much money.

I hope this does not mean you are one of the candidates recruited and trained by the Livingston County Republic Party?

That may be where you met Mike, but I am just a friend that ran his blog and communications when he ran for the state House.

Jared Geist said...

Typo on that last post.

It should read "I was NOT Saul Anuzis' driver, not I was just..."

Communications guru said...

I apologize for thinking you did. BTW, are you sure the web site address is correct, or is it just not up yet?

Jared Geist said...

I wasn't recruited or trained by anybody. I like to view this race as the nonpartisan election that it is.

www.jaredgeist.com will be my website, but I do not have it up yet. Should be up within the week. I will make a post here when its up and running.

No apology needed, it was my typo.

Becky said...

I’m Becky duPuis, Jared’s campaign manager. And while www.jaredgeist.com isn’t up yet (though we will let you know when it is) both he and I do have myspace pages. The address for Jared’s is, http://www.myspace.com/jagjagjag82 and mine is, http://www.myspace.com/xphile253 . Feel free to contact me at, duPuis.becky@gmail.com

Communications guru said...

Thanks for posting the links. I have never heard of a campaign manager for a school board candidate before, but then again this race has shown me a couple firsts so far. Good luck, and thanks for commenting.

Anonymous said...

see http://enginepuller.com

Jared Geist said...

site is up and running: http://www.jaredgeist.com

Anonymous said...

see http://doted.info

Anonymous said...

Bill Harvey is actually a common name in Livingston County. The Bill Harvey in this race is the 44 year old Genoa Township resident and father of 5.

His daughter was the 2003 HHS valedectorian. He has been active in Scouts, a 3 time Global finalist DI coach, a coach for recreational athletics in the community and has been seen in local stage productions in past years.

He recently returned to Genoa Township from a two year work assignment to Japan.

Sorry for the confusion.