UPDATE 07-23-19: It’s Savion Castro, also a friend of Mirilli and Muldrow. We checked four of the first five boxes correctly.
We handicap the field of 29 applicants for the vacancy on the Madison school board.
The six current members will select a replacement for Mary Burke among 29 applicants (twenty-nine!) early this evening (07-22-19). The new school board member will select a new superintendent to succeed privileged white woman Jennifer Cheatham, will pass on a new fiscal year budget, and probably O.K. another referendum to continue blowing state spending caps. We have zero inside information but here are some semi-educated guesses in order of decreasing confidence
Let’s check the boxes:
- It will be a progressive. (Leaves Blaska out!)
- It will be a minority race.
- It NOT be a former school board member. (Four of them have applied!)
- It will be an Asian (the only major ethnic group not represented on this identity politics-conscious body).
- They will pick one man to so it’s not an all-female board.
- It will be Tamara Mouw (who worked with Ananda Mirilli at DPI) or Nancy Vue Tran (their homage to Freedom Inc.). The latter is actually running for the appointment. Both are friends of Mirilli, who was elected this April on a “ticket” with Ali Muldrow; they are likely to vote in tandem.
The applicants are (as described by the WI State Journal):
- David Aguayo, executive assistant at the state Department of Workforce Development.
- Nino Amato, CEO for the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging & Health Groups.
- Erin Arango-Escalante, administrator for state Division of Early Care and Education at the Department of Children and Families.
- Micah Ariel-Rohr, assistant director at UW Hillel.
- David Blaska, former Dane County Board member and conservative blogger who ran unsuccessfully for a School Board seat in April.
- Carol Carstensen, former Madison School Board member, 1990 to 2008.
- Savion Castro, legislative aide for state Rep. Shelia Stubbs.
- Maia Chen, parent and South Side community member.
- Alexis Dean, Schools of Hope literacy tutor and coordinator.
- Rafael Gomez, retired after 33 years working in Madison School District.
- Erica Halverson, professor of curriculum and instruction at UW-Madison.
- Ed Hughes, former Madison School Board member, 2008 to 2017.
- Lorrie Hurckes Dwyer, executive director of the Dane County TimeBank.
- Angela Jenkins, project manager at American Family Insurance.
- Lillian Kelly, budget and policy analyst at the Department of Workforce Development.
- * Steve King, semi-retired, former Fluno Center executive director.
- Pamela Klein, 22-year Deerfield teacher.
- Juan Jose Lopez, former Madison School Board member, 1994 to 2006.
- Tamara Mouw, an educator who has worked at school, district and state levels.
- Dwight A. Perry, academic dean and professor at North Park University in Chicago and Madison pastor.
- Terjuan Short, recent West High School graduate.
- Arlene Silveira, former Madison School Board member, 2006 to 2015.
- Jeff Spitzer-Resnick, civil rights attorney and special-education advocate.
- Calista Storck, nursing student and recent La Follette High School graduate.
- Nancy Vue Tran, director of grants and development for Freedom Inc.
- Zachary M. Watson, an educator and musician with 10 years of experience working with families and students.
- Danielle Wendricks, former Madison School District Student Senate president and recent La Follette High School graduate.
- Jake Winkler, conservation biologist at the state Department of Natural Resources.
- Sonja Worthy, a mental health social worker.
Interesting fact: Most of the people on this list are Facebook friends of
Ananda Mirilli and Ali Muldrow.
If it was Blaska’s pick, it would be Dwight A. Perry, executive minister and regional president of Converge Great Lakes, a group of 120 religious congregations in Wisconsin and the U.P. He holds four degrees in education, including a doctorate from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Perry serves on the board of directors of One Hundred Black Men of Madison.
Blaska’s Bottom Line: No, wait, I’d pick Blaska.