Bios:

Name: Carmen L. Cullen

Address: 24 Monroe St. Apt. 2 ,  Livermore Falls

Age: 51

Occupation: Store manager of Cumberland Farms

Name: Tammy Castonguay Frost

Address: 773 Park St., Livermore Falls

Age: 37

Occupation: Radiologic technologist at Franklin Memorial Hospital

Name: Jacqueline Knight

Address: Pine Avenue, Livermore Falls

Age: 48

Occupation: Teaching the AmeriCorps Program at Dirigo High School

Name: Denise Rodzen

Address: Parkview Avenue, Livermore Falls

Age: N/A

Occupation: Retired

Name:  Katrina Roy

Address: 164 Fayette Road, Livermore Falls

Age:  37

Occupation: Construction clerk

Name: Ann Souther

Address: 257 Haines Corner Road

Age: 47

Occupation:  Receptionist, Franklin Memorial Hospital

LIVERMORE FALLS — Six residents seek election Tuesday to four seats on the new Regional School Unit 73 Board of Directors.

The new board, which will also include members from Jay and Livermore, will oversee the new combined, school district of Jay and RSU 36.

The polls will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 19 at the Livermore Falls Town Office.

The candidates are Carmen Cullen, Tammy Frost, Jackie Knight, Katrina Roy, Denise Rodzen and Ann Souther. Knight, Rodzen and Souther are current RSU 36 directors.

There are a number of tasks that need to be accomplished by July 1, and each candidate has their ideas on the most important.

One of those tasks, Cullen said, is to get the budget under control.

“I am going to be honest with you, I am new at this, but my passion for children and to do what is right for them has encouraged me to run for the school board this coming year,” Cullen said.

Cullen said she promises to do everything in her power to be honest and fair and to fight for the needs in RSU 73.

The most important task in Frost’s mind, she said, will be to ensure that the students starting the school year in 2011-12 have the resources necessary to generate a positive learning environment, Frost said.

“These resources include appropriate teacher/student ratios, essential educational materials, well-coordinated, safe transportation, and an initial strategic plan outlining next steps for the consolidation of RSU 73,” Frost said.

Knight said the most important issue will be getting students situated in their appropriate schools and making it an easy transition for them.

Among the many tasks that need to be accomplished, Rodzen said, are addressing the budget, the transition for the middle school students and staff, the organizational structure, determining who will be superintendent and assistant, contracts, and policies.

“The board needs to become comfortable with themselves in order to be able to work well together for the good of the students and the taxpayers, and accountability needs to be restored and upheld,” Rodzen said.

Roy said making a smooth transition for students, teachers and the community is most important.

Souther believes the most important task is to get both school districts on the same page.

“There is an enormous task ahead of all towns and with everyone working toward the same goal, it will make it that much more efficient,” Souther said. “Supplying the kids in the area with the best schooling possible should be first and foremost on everyone’s agenda. Getting together and working toward one common goal can get them there.”

If elected, Souther said she would stress communication.

“Communication — it’s key,” she said. “I firmly believe that the only way to get this complete is to lay everything out on the table. It’s essential that everyone bring everything out in the open and not hold back for future surprises. Not only does it help with the planning by all involved but it helps to build trust. No communication equals no trust.”

Rodzen said if elected, she will stay focused on the issues at hand and ask questions in order to make a more informed decision.

“I know it will consist of many meetings and long hours and I am prepared to participate fully in each and every meeting. I will bring ideas and suggestions to the board. I will make sure that we stay on task and that we organize and prioritize issues and deal with them in a timely manner but not a rushed manner,” Rodzen said. 

If elected, Roy said she will do her best to assure that the community concerns that are brought to her attention are addressed at the meetings and the community is informed of any changes. 

“It is important that what we say we are going to do is what we do, so the community will support us in future decisions we need to make on the communities’ behalf,” Roy said.

She believes everybody has a voice and they should be heard.

Knight said she would do her best to listen to the students, families and teachers and do what she can to help them along in the process.

“I plan on being on committees that I feel I have knowledge of and use it to the best of my ability,” Knight said.

Frost said as a board member her focus would be on generating a positive learning environment for the students of the combined communities.

“Sustaining ongoing learning while strategically implementing consolidation is essential to guarantee current and future students receive a quality education,” Frost said. “By closely managing our educational budget we can ensure students continue to learn while we work to realize the benefits and savings that consolidation offers as a community.”

Cullen said she believes her decision-making and management skills will be a benefit to the new board.

“I am a strong decision-maker. I have been a store manager for five years with Cumberland Farms and 14 years with Wal-Mart,” Cullen said. “I make tough money decisions on a daily basis. I am honest and fair. I enjoy leading and am a strong speaker.”

Frost said her professional career and passion as a parent are her greatest assets. 

“I have spent my professional life working in health care constantly interacting with colleagues and the community. As a parent of two school-age boys, I have a vested interest in the success of the education we offer our students now and in the years to come,” Frost said. “We are at the beginning of exciting change that can enhance the lives of current and future generations as well as strengthen the ties between our communities. I hope to be an active part of the exciting change.”

Knight said her leadership and listening skills, knowledge, enthusiasm and cooperation would be an asset to help move the new school board forward.

Rodzen believes her 15 years experience on the SAD36/RSU 36 board will benefit the new board.

“I listen to what people have to say. I listen to their concerns and try to address them. I carry with me the history of SAD 36,” Rodzen said. “I am a very vocal person, I am not afraid to ask the tough questions. I believe I work well with people and I offer ideas and solutions to issues. I believe in our (RSU 73) students, employees and community and together we will bring about change that is positive for all concerned,” she said.

Souther said being on the board is a learning process. 

“With the changeover in administration in recent years there has been a huge learning curve,” Souther said. “Having been through many of the processes that have occurred, I believe I can go into RSU 73 focusing on the task at hand and not having to learn the basics. I am not afraid to speak up and ask questions. Most importantly, I have the children and the staff’s best interest at hand.”

[email protected]

RSU 73 candidate, Livermore Falls

RSU 73 candidate

RSU 73 candidate

RSU 73 candidate

RSU 73 candidate

RSU 73 candidate


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