Sutera elected to lead high school board

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By Peter Elacqua
Staff Writer

Jennifer Sutera, who is Manalapan’s representative on the Freehold Regional High School District Board of Education, has been elected president of the board for 2017.

The board held its annual reorganization meeting on Jan. 9, during which Business Administrator/Board Secretary Sean Boyce swore in the winning candidates from the Nov. 8 election: Elizabeth Canario, who represents Englishtown; Amy Fankhauser, who is one of Howell’s two representatives; and Kathie Lavin, who represents Farmingdale.

Canario, Fankhauser and Lavin, all of whom were serving on the board, ran unopposed for new three-year terms.

Following that, nominations were accepted for the position of president.

Fankhauser nominated Michael Messinger, who represents Marlboro, and Heshy Moses, who represents Freehold Borough, nominated Sutera.

On a resolution to name Messinger president, Fankhauser, Lavin, Messinger and Vincent Accettola, who represents Colts Neck, voted yes. Canario, Sutera, Moses, Peter Bruno, who represents Howell, and Samuel Carollo, who represents Freehold Township, voted no.

Under the voting points system used by the board, that resolution failed, 5.2 “no” points points to 3.8 “yes” points.

On a resolution to name Sutera president, Accettola, Canario, Carollo, Lavin, Sutera and Moses voted yes. Bruno, Fankhauser and Messinger voted no.

Under the voting points system used by the board, that resolution passed, 5.6 “yes” points to 3.4 “no” points.

For the position of vice president, Bruno was nominated by Sutera and was elected in a unanimous vote of his fellow board members.

Moses concluded a six-year tenure as the board’s president and Superintendent of Schools Charles Sampson said, “During my previous superintendency, when I was a finalist for the candidacy in this district, it was Mr. Moses who came to my district at that time.

“One of the things he did was to talk to the custodial staff, to the secretaries and to folks in and around the building to (ask) them about how they were treated, how they felt and was there trust in the organization.

“(Moses) worked in the Freehold Regional district for almost 35 years so he is intimately familiar with the district. He has been an advocate for treating people with dignity, making sure this is a great place to work and making sure students have what they need in our schools to succeed,” Sampson said of Moses, who was a teacher and sports coach at Freehold High School, Freehold Borough.

In other business at the Jan. 9 meeting, the board accepted the retirement of two long-time employees: John Olson, a special education teacher at Howell High School, with 16 years of service, will retire on June 30; and Jim Schlentz, a health and physical education teacher at Colts Neck High School, with more than 16 years of service, will retire on May 31.

The board’s next meeting will be at 7 p.m. Feb. 13 at the district’s headquarters at 11 Pine St., Englishtown. The meeting is open to the public.