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For the week of April 25 through May 1, 2001

Pruett, Gasenica vie for school board

Express photos by David Seelig

Express Staff Writer

Kathy Pruett

With the Blaine County School District managing a $40 million tax levy to build a new high school and a slew of other projects, the two candidates running for school board trustee say they have special skills needed on the five-member board. Mark Gasenica is an architect and Kathy Pruett is the manager of Bank of America in Hailey.

Mark Gasenica

The two Hailey-area residents are promising lively campaigns involving door-to-door canvassing and advertising in local media before the May 15 election.

They are vying for a seat in Zone 3, bordered by Deer Creek Road, Zinc Spur Road and Indian Creek Road on the north and by Croy Creek Road and Quigley Gulch Road on the south.

When asked why heís running, Gasenica, 40, said, "This is pretty simple. I love this area. I have three kids in the district. I obviously care about what goes on in the district."

Along with contributing his skills as an architect, Gasenica said he would like to help "sharpen up" programs at Wood River High School, such as the Academies program, which provides students with career-oriented skills. Gasenica said that program is on the right track but has yet to reach its potential.

Gasenica said also he wants parents of Hispanic students to be more involved in the school system, and he wants to encourage the arts, which are often overshadowed by sports.

Pruett, 39, graduated from Wood River High School in 1980. She said her biggest assets as a board member would be her finance and management skills.

"I want to learn about the inner workings of the school district," she said. "Iím a very organized person. Iím very passionate."

She also said she would draw on her years of experience volunteering for the Academies program, an after-school daycare program that was the precursor to Kidshop, and with the Hailey and Bellevue parent-teacher organization.

Pruett served on the board of the Hailey Rotary Club from 1993 to 1997 and was club president for a year during that time, all experience that she said has improved her leadership qualities.

On May 15, polls will be open at Hailey Elementary School from noon to 8 p.m. Only voters qualified to register within Zone 3 may cast ballots.

A second seat on the board for the south-county Zone 1 is uncontested, with incumbent Howard Royal planning to serve another term. No election is scheduled for that zone.

Declarations of candidacy for both seats were due April 13. The deadline for write-in candidates to declare is May 1.



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