A deep field develops in race to replace pair of members recalled by district voters

Six men and two women are in the running to fill a pair of vacant slots on the Forest Grove School Board.

Some familiar faces and several political newcomers will greet sitting board members Alisa Hampton, Fred Marble and Kate Grandusky when they hold candidate interviews Jan. 18 and 19. Each hopes to replace either Anna Tavera-Weller or Terry Howell, former board members who were voted off the panel following a contentious budget cycle marked by massive program cuts last spring.

Decisions on appointments are expected Jan. 23 and the new board members are due to be sworn in on Feb. 13, said Hampton, the board chair.

The candidate slate includes retired banking executive Gil Jimenez; former Cornelius city councilor Brad Coffey; outgoing Pacific University liberal arts dean John Hayes; graduate student and mother Karen O'Donnell; former educator Jeff Cooper; veterinarian John Minor; financial advisor Jim Corbeau; and homemaker Jennifer Norman.

Gilbert 'Gil' Jimenez

Years in district: 1

Occupation: Retired banking industry executive

Experience in school-related activities: Portland State University foundation board member; board chair, Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber

Why running: 'I have, whenever possible, made myself available to schools wherever we have lived'

Brad Coffey

Years in district: 12

Occupation: Reliability analyst for Georgia Pacific Corp.

Boards or school-related activities: Attending student activities [and] school board meetings

Why running: 'I understand and can accept the responsibility of being a board member'

John Hayes

Years in district: 9

Occupation: Administrator at Pacific University

Boards or school-related activities: Science projects leader, field trip chaperone, school garden work party participant, helped broker access for FGSD students to college courses at Pacific

Why running: '[I'm] looking for ways to continue my lifelong engagement in education'

Jeff Cooper

Years in district: 11

Occupation: Unemployed career educator

Boards or school-related activities: Former education technology specialist for Pacific University's college of education; parent representative to the FGSD EdTech cadre

Why running: 'I believe I bring the strongest experiences to propel FGSD into 21st century education'

Jim Corbeau

Years in district: 4

Occupation: Financial advisor

Boards or school-related : 2011 FGSD Summit on Education participant

Why running: 'I have a vested interest in the success of the district and its schools, as we have three children enrolled in the district'

Jennifer Norman

Years in district: 11

Occupation: Homemaker

Boards or school-related activities: Volunteer at local schools

Why running: 'I enjoy community service and am interested in helping the district move forward'

John Minor

Years in district: 58

Occupation: Veterinarian

Boards or school-related activities: None, although three sons went through the Forest Grove school system

Why running: 'I believe you need to serve in the community you live in'

Karen O'Donnell

Years in district: 2

Occupation: Graduate student, mother

Boards or school-related activities: Art literature coordinator, FGSD School Based Health Center board member

Why running: 'It's important to be involved in the community and [serve] our schools. I am a good listener and problem solver'

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