Wednesday, February 14, 2001
EDITOR'S NOTE; This is Part 2 of countinuing coverage of county school board seats being contested on the March 13 election. Ballots for the election will be mailed out Feb. 23.
DALLAS -- The incumbent is a full-time mother with three children in the Dallas School District.
Her challenger is a retired teacher who worked for the district for 30 years.
Susan Humphrey and Frank Pender show few differences in their opinions on the district and where it is going. The choice for Position 1 boils down largely to a matter of resumes.
Humphrey's resume includes her past four years on the school board.
After being appointed in 1998, she was formally elected in 1999.
She has also been involved as a volunteer in the district. She has been a classroom volunteer and served on parent-teacher committees.
She has been involved in the theater department at Dallas High School as well as activities at Lyle Elementary School.
Humphrey said she likes the direction the board has been going. "I think it's a really collaborative board. Everyone seems be focused on what's best for kids."
Named chair of the board last July, Humphrey said she brings an important perspective as a parent to school board issues.
"My viewpoint is as a parent of children in the district and as someone who is in the schools on a frequent basis," she said. "I believe I'm able to see all sides of an issue and reach compromises."
In addition to her work on the school board, Humphrey volunteers for the Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program which provides a voice for children in court cases.
In the next few years, board members will be looking at property for a new school. They will also be changing the accounting system for the district.
"That will affect the funding," Humphrey said. "That will definitely be an issue.
Humphrey said she is also looking forward to working on the mandates of education reform and making sure the district is up to speed on preparing students for CIM and CAM requirements.
Humphrey grew up in Lebanon and went to college at Linfield College. Dallas, she said, feels like home. "It's a great place to raise children."
Frank Pender and Dallas Superintendent Dave Voves began their education careers on the same day in the same building.
That was in September of 1969 at the Academy building.
Voves eventually went into administration. Pender spent the next 30 years teaching.
He taught core subjects social studies, history and literature, mostly to seventh-graders. Pender said he wants to give something back to the district and community.
"The community has given me 20 years of love and care."
Pender started out as a social psychology major at Portland State University. That soon evolved into an education degree at Oregon College of Education (now Western Oregon University).
He lived in Monmouth-Independence for 13 years before moving to Dallas.
These days, the retired teacher is a small woodlands owner and he operates a sawmill. He serves on the board of the Willamette Education Service District and on the site committee for the 4-H Center in Salem.
He has also worked with county youth and juvenile programs as well as the county and state mental health departments.
Pender said he has no beef with the current school board.
"I think they've done a very good job. We've had a very good leader in Dave Voves. He's been a real blessing for the school district."
Nonetheless, Pender said he would enjoy working with a new superintendent. "It will be exciting to be a part of that."
He also looks forward to working on education reform and helping the board decide the details of a new school -- from getting the land to selling the concept to voters.
It's important for board members to be proper stewards of public funds, he said. "Taxes are important to people."