New Leadership Brings Majority Women

Colton Thompson

Starting in January of 2018, three new members will begin serving on the school board. On Nov. 7, Renae Hansen, Rosa Cavazos, and Erica Price won their elections. When they take office, it will be the first time that the majority of the members are women.

“I have been a part of the Shawnee Heights community my entire life. That is the reason why I chose to run for school board because I want to give back to the community that has given so much to me and my family,” Hansen said. She beat her opponent Matthew Stadler by almost 400 votes.

“One of my goals is balance. With every ‘hot topic’ or issue that comes to the board, I want to make sure I am 100 percent educated on the subject and have also presented the opportunity to engage in discussion with parents, patrons, staff, and faculty. I want to be an informed voice for our community,” Price said. Price has been active in the Tecumseh North community for the past eight years and has gradually become more involved with the district.

“I would like to see how we can continue to help students recognize their interests so they are better suited to find their career path,” Cavazos said. “I know we have some programs in place and the school is making great strides to continue this goal, so I want to see what other programs can be added to help students and parents have the conversations early.” Cavazos moved here from California 11 years ago and has been involved in the Shawnee Heights Community ever since. She has been involved in SHES PTO, site council, and DAC as well as having students go through the middle school and high school.

Cavazos originally tied with her opponent, Thomas Browne Jr. When the elections came in, Browne was ahead by 11 votes. After provisional ballots were added, Cavazos and Browne were tied at 1,058 votes. A provisional ballot is used to record a vote when there are questions about a given voter’s eligibility. Whether a provisional ballot is counted depends upon the verification of that voter’s eligibility. If the voter is eligible, these ballots are then added on to the totals. In order to break the tie, more provisional votes were approved and Cavazos won by three votes. If the candidates would have still been tied after this, the winner would have been decided by a coin flip.

“It seems that more and more people have given up on the election system saying that their vote just does not count. With this latest race being decided by three votes, and the one four years ago being decided by one vote, this just shows that every vote absolutely does count,” Eric Deitcher said. Deitcher is the Vice president of the board.

The next elections will be held in November of 2019 for the other four board positions.