10 people apply for vacant school board post

BUSD-Bonar-Street
The Berkeley School Board has been looking for a new member since Leah Wilson resigned in March. Photo: Kaia Diringer

Ten Berkeley residents — including a former aide to Mayor Tom Bates, the former top administrator for the city of Oakland, a UC Berkeley law professor, a nuclear scientist, a Berkeley High math teacher, and a longtime member of the high school’s Safety Committee — have applied to fill the vacancy on the Berkeley Unified School District board.

The applicants are vying to fill the seat vacated March 31 by Board President Leah Wilson. The district will whittle down the list to a set of finalists by April 24. Those candidates will be invited to give a three-minute presentation to the board and the community at a May 1 meeting. The school board hopes to select Wilson’s replacement by May 8.

The list of applicants includes:

  • Ty Alper, a law professor at UC Berkeley’s School of Law and former staff attorney at the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta. He has frequently represented inmates on death row.
  • Peter Bloomsburgh, a longtime math teacher at Berkeley High School who ran for the board in 1998 but narrowly lost
  • Michael Bolgatz, a Berkeley lawyer who specializes in general litigation and arbitration
  • Meleah Hall, a special education teacher in the West Contra Costa Unified School District
  • Spencer Klein, a scientist and former deputy director of the Nuclear Science Division at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
  • Dan Lindheim, former city administrator (city manager) for the city of Oakland from 2008-12 and member of the state bar
  • Satish Rao, a professor of computer science at UC Berkeley, and a Berkeley High School Site Council member from 2010-13
  • Margit Roos-Collins, a longtime member of the Berkeley High School Safety Committee and now a member of the School Site Council
  • Julie Sinai, former chief of staff to Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates and now the director of local government and community relations at UC Berkeley; director of school linked programs for Berkeley Unified from 1999-2002
  • Mark Zoidis, an independent financial adviser who has designed financial performance monitoring software and worked previously for Progressive Asset Management

The school district made hard copies of the applications available at the district office, at 2020 Bonar St., on Thursday. The district had originally planned to release the documents Friday, April 19, but acting School Board President Karen Hemphill said she changed the schedule earlier this month to give people more time to pick up the applications before the weekend.


Click each name to view the associated application as a PDF.

Wilson resigned in March after she accepted a post as Court Executive Officer for the Alameda County Superior Court. She said her new position could have created a conflict of interest.

Related:
Berkeley School Board President Leah Wilson resigns
[03.18.13]
Berkeley School Board seeks replacement director [03.29.13]

Additional reporting to this post was contributed by Emilie Raguso.

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