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Canajoharie, NY ,

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Jesse Quackenbush

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Cheryl Vroman


Canajoharie BOE Candidate Profiles - 05/01/2014

Wednesday, April 30, 2014 - Updated: 9:28 AM

Two compete for seat on Canajoharie BOE


C-S-E Editor

CANAJOHARIE -- Two candidates -- Jesse Quackenbush and Cheryl Vroman -- will compete for a seat on the Canajoharie Central School District Board of Education. The open seat is being vacated by longtime BOE Member Eric Trahan. It carries a five year term. The vote will take place at the Canajoharie High School on May 20, from Noon to 9 p.m.

-- Jesse Quackenbush

Jesse Quackenbush was born and raised in Canajoharie, graduating from the Canajoharie Central School in 1980, serving as class president in his senior year.

Quackenbush, who said that 99 percent of his family have graduated from Canajoharie High School, is married with five children aged 1-32.

He's a graduate of Onondaga Community College with an Associate degree in Applied Science/Radio and Television. Quackenbush received a Bachelor of Arts from SUNY Albany in 1984, majoring in Political Science, minoring in Communication/Journalism.

Quackenbush received a doctorate from the University of Houston in 1987, and has been self-employed for 27 years, practicing law for 26.

He's created an award-winning documentary film titled "Last Word", and has authored a non-fiction book, throughout the years also serving on numerous non-profit boards. Quackenbush is currently serving on the Montgomery County Office for the Aging Board.

Quackenbush currently has two children enrolled in the Canajoharie Central School District — a 16-year-old sophomore and a four-year-old who will soon start the pre-kindergarten program.

One of his goals in running for a seat on the CCS Board of Education is to "guarantee the health, welfare and safety of the kids." Quackenbush said he's particularly interested in developing and maintaining "a viable pre-K program, because of what's at the forefront of all of our news and media — that it's the best potential start in terms of success in later years."

If elected, he hopes to see that the program is adequately resourced, which would include ensuring the program's viability and potentially expanding it so that no child is left out because attendance is at capacity.

Quackenbush noted that other goals and interests include increasing the graduation rate, decreasing the drop out rate and encouraging more benevolent scholarships for students.

Quackenbush said he feels his life experience, being a successful product of pre-k through doctorate education, and having served on numerous non-profit boards, has prepared him to serve on the CCS Board of Education. He hopes that, as somebody who has come "from a very disadvantaged background" who has achieved success, he can set an example for students.

He said, "I think I can inspire kids," to realize, "that education is not a dream. It's an attainable goal regardless of social situation or status."

-- Cheryl Vroman

Cheryl Vroman, a Canajoharie resident since 1995, has raised three kids in the Canajoharie Central School District: Andrew, a graduate of the class of 2011; Adam, a graduate of the class of 2013; and Alex, a current sophomore.

A graduate of Colonie High School, Vroman studied sociology and psychology at SUNY Plattsburgh. She has worked for the United States Postal Service for 11 years, and is currently employed as a city carrier for the Johnstown Post Office.

If she's elected to a seat on the Canajoharie Central School Board of Education, Vroman said her goal is to keep the focus on the district's students. She said, "It's all bout the kids. It's not about me and it's not about other board members."

Vroman said that CCS has provided a wonderful education for her children, and she hopes to help maintain that level of exemplary service for the district's future graduates. 

She said, "I think Canajoharie is a wonderful school and I want to make sure it stays that way."

Vroman said she would like to help preserve educational and extracurricular activities, commenting, "I don't want to see programs done away with."

She said that programs such as music, art and sports are all integral in transforming students into "well rounded individuals who are prepared for life."

Vroman said that while she attended a large school with a graduating class of 900, where it's easy to get "lost in the crowd," she wants to help preserve the personal nature of CCS, stating, "the teachers know the kids -- they're part of the community."

Vroman, who described herself as "level headed and concerned about the children of our community," said that while her previous job responsibilities have never allowed her to pursue her interest in serving the community by sitting on a board of education, her current job situation will allow her time to pursue her interest in giving back to a district that has always provided for her family.

"I really want to give back something," Vroman said, concluding, "We need to provide for these kids. We've got to keep them wondering -- keep them interested in life."


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