Dougherty elected to GJBOE

New Greater Johnstown School District Board of Education President Kathy Dougherty reads the oath of office at the board’s organizational meeting Thursday night at Johnstown High School. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

JOHNSTOWN — The Greater Johnstown School District Board of Education on Thursday elected longtime city educator and former Northville Central School District Superintendent Kathy Dougherty as its new president.

Dougherty was not the first person nominated at the board’s organizational meeting at Johnstown High School.

Outgoing board President Kathryn Zajicek nominated longtime board member Evamarie Mraz, who is starting her fifth, three-year term on the board. Zajicek previously announced she was dropping out of the running for president.

“At this point, I would like to decline that nomination,” Mraz told the board.

Mraz, co-owner of A & E Sportswear embroidery shop in downtown Johnstown, told the board she had out-of-town commitments during the next year that would prevent her from serving as president.

Zajicek’s current three-year board term doesn’t expire until June 30, 2018, but she previously told the board she didn’t wish to have her name placed in nomination for another year. She served as president about six months. She removed herself from the 2017-18 president’s role due to family reasons. But last month she endorsed Mraz as president.

The oath of office was read by Mraz, as well as board newcomers Beverly Alves and Noelle Smrtic. The three taking the oath were elected to three-year terms by district voters on May 16. Mraz received 392 votes in being reelected, while Murray Hill Road, town of Ephratah resident Beverly Alves received 371. Voters also selected Noelle Smrtic of County Highway 131, with 12 votes, as the top write-in candidate for the only available seat on the board. Smrtic’s name was one of about 70 write-in candidates.

Dougherty retired as superintendent of the Northville Central School District in 2012. She has been serving on the Johnstown school board since 2013. She is also a former Johnstown teacher and principal.

Dougherty led the board Thursday through its lengthy organizational meeting.

She nominated board member Greg Truckenmiller as board vice president and he was elected.

Near the conclusion of the session, Dougherty noted she will be formally making board committee assignments.

“I will need to review the committee structure,” she said.

Dougherty asked board members to let her know which committees they were interested in serving on.

Also sworn in as a formality for the new school year were several district officials, including Superintendent Patricia Kilburn.

Larraina Carpenter was sworn in as district clerk for the 2017-18 school year. She received praise from new member Alves.

“She helped me so much,” Alves said. “I just want to say thank you.”

Other organizational appointments included: Melissa Baker as district treasurer and chief accounting officer, Carmella Anagnostopulos as school tax collector, Dr. Richard Solby as school physician, and Suzanne Hall as district auditor

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at [email protected]

By Patricia Older

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