These are important but often get lost in the shuffle. Some candidates who are newcomers will get a free pass if there are no challengers. There is not much information online about some of the newer candidates but hopefully that will improve as we get closer to November.

Sue Lempert

In the San Mateo Union High School District, Marc Friedman chose not to run again. There was speculation over whom would take his place. At one time David Lim, former San Mateo mayor and councilman, was interested but he is involved in a new law firm and now is not the right time for him. Incumbent Greg Land is running and there are two others with him: Neal Kaufman, a Burlingame parent, chaired the citizens’ committee for Measure L and is a lacrosse coach at Burlingame High School, and disability advocate and Hillsdale parent, Ligia Andrade Zuniga.

In the San Mateo-Foster City Elementary School District, two incumbents are seeking re-election but a third is not. Lisa Warren, a San Mateo Park parent and a registered nurse, will be joining the board without a challenge. So will incumbents Shara Watkins and Noelia Corzo-Solorzano.

***

There is a challenger to an incumbent on the San Mateo County Board of Education. Rod Hsaio who apparently has done an outstanding job is being challenged by Chelsea Bonini. Bonini served only one term on the San Mateo Foster City Elementary School District Board of Trustees when she decided to seek an appointment to the San Mateo City Council. That didn’t work. Bonini has been active in local Democratic politics and she is trying to use those connections to bolster her bid (all these school board seats are nonpartisan). Still Hsaio has his supporters, especially among Asian Americans. So it will be an interesting race.

***

The San Mateo County Community College Board doesn’t usually get that much attention. But it’s former chancellor Ron Galatolo is under investigation for personally profiting from campus construction projects, and still retains his full salary. It seems the real challenge for those running for the board will be their oversight of Galatolo. How much did they know and when did they know it? And what, if anything, did they do about it? Since the election is by district and not countywide, two incumbents, Dave Mandelkern of Hillsborough and Maurice Goodman of South San Francisco will be running against each other. The trustee most visibly not in the chancellor’s corner was Richard Holober. He won a surprise victory in the last election over fellow incumbent Tom Mohr as both had ended up in the same district. Both were valuable members of the board and in this case district elections failed to serve the public’s best interests. Incumbent Karen Schwarz is not running again. She represented Redwood City and part of Menlo Park. Running to replace her are Menlo Park resident John Pimentel; Redwood City resident Lisa Hicks-Dumanske who is director of the Redwood City Library Foundation; and Blair Whitney, member of the North Fair Oaks Community Council. And in another trustee area, Eugene Whitlock, former district vice chancellor, who holds the same post at the University of California, Berkeley, is facing off versus Lisa Petrides, founder and CEO of nonprofit Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management in Education

***

In the Sequoia Union High School District, Carrie Du Bois is running unopposed; incumbent Georgia Jack has two challengers. Shamar Edwards was formerly principal of Capuchino High School in San Bruno and after that stint was hired by the Sequoia district to be director of Alternative Education; Rich Ginn is a business owner. Two newcomers are running for another seat. Jacqui Cebrian is a reading specialist in the Menlo Park City school district and Shawneece Stevenson is a social worker.

***

The San Mateo-Foster City Elementary School District Board of Trustees made a controversial decision to eliminate School Resource Officers (from the San Mateo Police Department) with one board member, Ken Chin dissenting.

Many members of the community are not happy with this decision and feel the board acted too soon in the heat of the protest movement to defund the police and get them off the school campus. These officers are well trained and are there to help kids, not threaten them. The question is who will take their place? They better know how to deal with troubled youth when early intervention is so important and know the community and its resources. The school district was paying the Police Department for their services and this rankled some trustees. Let’s hope they reconsider.

Sue Lempert is the former mayor of San Mateo. Her column runs every Monday. She can be reached at sue@smdailyjournal.com.

Note to readers: this article has been amended to correct the spelling of Dave Mandelkern's name, and add another district race omitted from the original version. 

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(32) comments

aball52

I am reminded of a Firhouse Critique of a fire and answers first question answer "I did Chief." second answer to a quesdtion "I did Chief. " Third question "I did Chief. " Chief's next question " Anybody else at this fire?" My question to SMDJ "Anybody else respond in your paper besides Christopher Conway?"

Christopher Conway

I do not want to criticize you but I honestly have no idea what you are trying to say. I did see my name in there, so maybe you can reword that a bit and send again.

aball52

Hi Chris what I am saying is the fire chief asks his menwho did what at the fire..every question one foireman replied I did Chief Finally the chief asked if anybody else was at the fire/ I ask the SMDJ if anabody else responds to the comments besided Chris Conway? Maybe they need to evaluate one person always commenting WAs anbody else responding besides Chris Conway? . That's what I am asking the Journal? is there a Chris Conway monoply for comments ? Appears to me there might be?

Christopher Conway

OK, now I understand. Thank you. If you notice, I don't comment on every story in the SMDJ. Though I read the paper 6 days a week cover to cover, I concentrate on the Opinion section of the paper when commenting through my subscription privileges. When there are stories that I am very interested in, I usually comment on those. I feel the SMDJ's Opinion section is the Market Square for sharing of ideas and thoughts on an opinion from someone in our community. I don't know what your name is, but whoever you are, maybe it seems I am commenting on all the stories when I am actually only commenting on those stories you and I are both interested in.

aball52

I posted and the computer took it. I very well have read the POA response to the riot march walk held and was so very glad we were informed there might have been a freeway mall gunman on the roof interference were it not for the well informed officers taking precautions and having seen the familiar riot faces travelling the peninsula doing harm rioting stopping traffic etc.. Thank you Officer McMilton I support you always will.. Your being chastised is uncalled for especially in the crowd that day and now today uncalled for and unsupported by most of us citizens. What I have noticed about Mr Conway is he seems to be an educated snob about private schools Inform him that drugs are definitely an equal .opportinity destroyer no matter what education provided here. . California AA BA and an MA Ivy Leaque an eastern accredited University and in Spain. abroad You can attack if you like. Won't impress me at all. Ms Lee is impressive. I applaud the POA ignoring the ones who spoke against you. and supporting her The danger is the damage your term SJW will do concerning the BLM beliefs they support. and our district . The kids having taken advantage of the camaraderie of the officers will benefit and keep benefting. a good thing attacked by SJW good terms.names. They don't care who they hurt as long as they collaborate Brown act? and think they are succeeding promoting what they call social justice and the rest of us plod along doing our best to support what we think is right. Mrs Lee was chosen by her constituents to fiil a vacancy on the council and is now running. Support her as she has paid her dues. I will stand up for CSM, UCD and Middlebury and public schools forever. Mrs Lee has paid . her dues to get there and will succeed inspite of all the naysayers. I come from a family of service to city managers,serving san Mateo hellsborough having built the Belmont Slough , fire departments 1955 until `1999. I support them as well as all the departments . Keep it up . Job well done. .

Christopher Conway

The San Mateo Police Officers Association endorsement of the appointed Ms. Lee is a headscratcher. I have been thinking about it and I realize what they actually are doing. They like Diane Pappan: but we all know she is what they call a shoe-in. So, it really between Ms. Lee and Ms. Nash. They do not want Ms. Nash so they are going to support Ms. Lee knowing Ms. Pappan will get in with or without their endorsement. Poor Ms. Nash, left out in the cold. If in anyway my labeling Ms. Lee a SWJ does damage to the BLM movement in my city, I take that as a complete complement but I don't agree with you in the slightest. I am an ant trying to stop of locomotive. We obviously do not have a good pool of candidates this year, not including Ms. Pappan. I do like her. All Lives Matter. Always have, Always will in San Mateo.

SMPOA President

We endorsed Diane Papan as well, FYI. I think Nash’s history as a prominent Hillary fundraiser and inability to take sides on important city initiatives would Really give you some heartburn. Amourence Lee is very transparent.

SMPOA President

Just for clarification, I can not verify that Lisa Nash did not take a position. I spoke out of turn there, should have not put our unverified information for that, I apologize. And being a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton was not meant as a negative jab at Lisa Nash and the POA has no issue with that. I figured that Mr. Conway would take issue with that based on his other posts. If I could delete the above comment, I would because it was not fair to Mrs. Nash.

SMPOA President

Thank you for your support, Aball! Mr. Conway is an activist (the conservative version of an SJW, not sure what the official name of that is, he might be in a league of his own lol), those types (no matter the political bend) are so ego driven they can’t see past beyond their own noses, so I’m not worried about his opinion.

Christopher Conway

Your not elected, that is why you don't care about my opinion. Back at you, I don't care about your opinion. I am in a league all my own, and you just made yourself very well known to me. I have been a big supporter of police during this entire time and have been very upset about the SJW crowd becoming violent with police around the country. Then you turn around and endorse a woman who does not have public support other than in North Central and who supports these radicals. Ask her? . I know your name now. I have been in this community much longer than you and I will be here after you are long gone. In the meantime, keep hiding behind your badge, and keep supporting SJW's to sit on the city council. What happened to our police departments who back people like Ms. Lee and criticize long time law and order citizens who have had their back during this entire time. Nice job reaching out to the community, Rory, might want to do a little communicating with people outside city hall.

Christopher Conway

I will give you one thing; you are the first to attack me using your real name instead of all the anonymous trolls that do it daily, even though you do it through the SMPOA, which is pretty shameful, but we will move on. The reason you are not worried about my opinion is you are unelected. We are perfectly aware that public union employees don’t really care what people in public think of them. That is a given. When a Police Officer Association endorses a SJW like Ms. Lee in this heated environment we are currently in, we know something stinks in Denmark. I am in a league of my own, that is true, I have been in this community much longer than you, and I will be here long after you are gone. I have always been a huge backer of police and law and order, but your move in endorsing Amourence Lee has me questioning my own town’s police department. Might want to talk with people in the community outside city hall, you might learn something Rory.

Christopher Conway

One other thing Rory, the conservative version of a SWJ is called a Patriot. There are quite a few in your community, you should get to know some.

smmikee

Chris I appreciate your frequent comments and wish the SMDJ would open the feature up to non-subscribers again. I get they are trying to incent people to subscribe (as we both do) but the reduction in number of voices commenting on local stories is a shame - I love reading different perspectives from my neighbors - we don’t have to all agree on every single item but respect for putting your 2 cents out there regularly.

SMPOA President

Patriots come in all stripes, Mr. Conway. I do appreciate your opinion and willingness to have a dialogue, and I understand where you’re coming from. I would wager that we have more opinions common than not. I also appreciate your support of police. I don’t know what you mean when you say that I’m hiding behind my badge, I’m just a guy here, having a conversation. I do care about everyone’s opinion as its important to my association to be connected to the community. I interact with citizens daily and I think I’ve established a pretty good pulse on the general consensus of the community. San Mateo is fortunate to have three well qualified candidates for city council. At the local level, I do not think their political leanings have as much as an effect on the way they govern as opposed to their state and national counterparts. The POA establishes relationships with these candidates because we want to have a seat at the table while they make decisions that effect us and the services we provide the community. Most times we provide our elected leaders and candidates with information from a line level officer’s perspective that they may not be able to get from our management. We educate them on law enforcement procedures and lobby for policies that help us execute our duties in a manner that would serve San Mateo residents more effectively. And for the record, I was born in San Mateo and wish I could live here because I know this city and it’s residents are great (for the most part), that’s why I chose to work here. Unfortunately, I can not afford to live here. Not a sob story, just the reality.

aball52

Mr President you jostled my memory when you mentioned the ride alongs for the kids..My grandaughter rode along with your Officer of the Year Christine Klein. She and my boys alcolyted together at Transfifguration in San Mateo Her Brother Devin I hear is wirh a Public Safety Department in Los Altos.?.I loved remembering Christine You must know her as a famous officer of the year.I think my granddughter was around 15 -16years old. just the right age to enjoy a ride along. Thank you and your department and Christine I hear she is across the bay now I hear from her on line at times..She will always do well as she is an industrious and smart. Officer of the year.

Christopher Conway

Mr. McMilton- I am not out to get you or am I a gotcha person. I just had a hard time figuring out why the Police Association endorsed Ms. Lee. I am 100% behind the Police and I have supported the Police over the entire time since the George Floyd tragedy and the aftermath across the country. Probably way more than the average person. Just a note that I respect your decision, I respect you and I respect law and order, you have enough on your plate I'm sure than this. Good luck and see around town.

aball52

SLKM not our kids.

Christopher Conway

Rory McMilton, head of the SMPOA, good to know. I think you might be confused why you think we should care who you or your organization support. I think you are overestimating your importance and that of your organization. Not educated? , President of the SMPOA criticizing long term residents about their opinions, want to keep running your mouth?

SMPOA President

I am concerned, that’s why I replied and pointed you to more information. Clearly you are only concerned with arguing on the internet. And I said undereducated, not uneducated. I think you need to brush up on your reading comprehension skills, that may be where your shortfall is.

Christopher Conway

Shortfall? like hiding behind that badge of yours. Are you saying that to me as an individual or as the president of the San Mateo Police Officers Union? If you want to see me in public rather than on the internet. Please Google, "Man walks through crowd of angry protestors: This video has been viewed millions of times. The video is of me walking to the California Republican Convention in which I had a ticket and I was kicked and beaten by the SWJ's on my way in. No help from the police who let Trump supporters get pummeled that day and no apologies for what happened by our public leaders. Where you president of SMPOA back then? Proud of the job you did that day?

SMPOA President

I was there, you must have been the guy that dressed up like Trump! I helped pull you out of the angry mob you decided to stroll through while dressed that way. So, I know for a 100% certainty the police helped you. And that was a Burlingame operation, so you can direct your complaints there. No, I was not the SMPOA President then, not that it matters. You made a splash and had your moment, that’s for sure.

Christopher Conway

Very glad to hear that many voters in the San Mateo- Foster City School District took notice of the elimination of a School Resource Officer by the Board of Trustees of the school district. Maybe these social justice warriors on the board will wake up and take notice that this racial rhetoric and actions are not welcome here. As elections are coming soon, let's show all of these social justice candidates the door whether they work for the school district or a city council. Remember, we control the outcome, they work for us, vote them out. Let' start with Amourence Lee in the San Mateo city council who should have never been on the city council to begin with. Target #1.

Tafhdyd

Thanks for the tip. I will be sure to vote for Amourence Lee, if you oppose her she must be good.

SMPOA President

We endorsed Amo, she’s great! Not a mindless SJW. A very thoughtful and deliberative leader. We posted our endorsement letter for on our website in the media relations section, you should check it out: https://sanmateopoa.org/media-relations

I would avoid putting Amourence Lee in box. She breaks the mold (in a good way) when it comes to progressive politicians for sure.

Christopher Conway

So she has the support of a public union, that is not surprising. How about we start getting candidates without public union support. I do no care what you would or would not avoid, I care about the taxpayers and the citizens of San Mateo.

SMPOA President

If you cared, you would actually do some research before spouting off on issues you are clearly undereducated on.

Christopher Conway

Also, next time when you use the symbol of the San Mateo Police Officers Association. how about giving us your name. Nobody has any idea who you are.

SMPOA President

My name is Rory McMilton, the President of San Mateo Police Officers’ Association (not a Union)... not that difficult to figure out.

SMat

Do you know the thing called Google?

Allow me...

https://lmgtfy.com/?q=smpoa+president

Tafhdyd

Golly Christopher, the SMPOA speaks highly of your villain. I guess you have your kickers in a knot. You will get over it with the help of mental care from the OBAMA CARE plans that the right wing hasn't done away with after 10 years of trying.

Christopher Conway

Last time I checked, the president of the SMPOA is unelected by voters. Why should voters care what a political organization thinks. We definitely don't look to them to inform us on who to vote for.

Tafhdyd

Sorry, spell check changed it, should be knickers in a knot.

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