Tuesday, November 26, 2013
The Westport Board of Education tonight unanimously re-elected Democrat Elaine Whitney as its chair and elected Republican Jeannie Smith as vice-chair. Both won election on Nov. 5.
“I am honored and humbled by the confidence shown in me,” said Whitney, who pledged to maintain the board’s nonpartisanship as demonstrated by electing a Republican vice chair.
Whitney has served as board chair since November 2012 when she took over from then acting vice chair Republican Jim Marpe who succeeded Democrat Don O’Day when he resigned in October 2012. Marpe resigned to run for first selectman and was elected earlier this month.
Whitney, who holds an undergraduate degree from Yale and an MBA from Northwestern University, was co-president of the Long Lots Elementary School PTA until appointed to the board in January 2009. She succeeded Marjorie Cion, a Democrat, who resigned.
Smith joined the board in December 2012, filling the opening created when Marpe resigned.
A Westport resident since 2008 and a former public school teacher in Westchester County for 11 years, Smith is a 1994 graduate of Fordham University having earned her masters degree in teaching.
The mother of four was an unsuccessful Republican candidate for a board seat in the 2011 election.
Smith takes over the vice chairman slot from Republican Michael McGovern who was not re-elected on Nov. 5.
There is a Republican vacancy on the board created when Jennifer Tooker won election to the Board of Finance on Nov. 5, and McGovern could be among the candidates under consideration.
The board also unanimously re-elected Democrat Michael Gordon as secretary.
Posted 11/26/13 at 01:03 AM Permalink