Leadership experience

To the Editor:

I am supporting Bill Holub and Colleen Foley in the upcoming Board of Education election. I served alongside both candidates as Trustee, Vice President and President of our Board of Education for twelve years and will unequivocally attest to their depth and breadth of leadership experience, commitment to increasing opportunities and raising the bar for ALL students, and exercise of prudent judgment as stewards of community resources.

As a BOE Trustee, I first met and worked with Bill Holub when he applied for and was appointed to serve on the School District Audit Committee. The Audit Committee, required by law in all NYS school districts, consists of several community members with particular expertise in finance, auditing and/or accounting, usually two board trustees, and the Assistant Superintendent for Business. Every year, the committee meets with the District’s external and internal auditors, reviews every aspect of the District’s financial statements and annual risk assessment of operations, and makes
recommendations for detailed internal audits of specific operations to the BOE. In the ten years I worked with Bill, both on the Audit Committee and on the BOE, his expertise in finance, accounting, bonding and budgeting was instrumental in not only ensuring, but also improving the School District’s fiscal health and stability. Bill’s insight and understanding of the importance of internal controls led the BOE to authorize additional annual detailed risk assessment audits to tighten our system of checks and balances across all business operations. As a Trustee, Bill’s focus on sound, conservative budgeting, longterm and strategic capital planning, prudent utilization of reserves, financial forecasting and accountability not only enabled us to sustain and improve our quality educational programs, but also greatly contributed to the District’s earning of a AAA bond rating. At the Board table, Bill is a critical, independent thinker; he assesses the facts, carefully considers differing points of view, and makes thoughtful decisions with the best interests of students always in mind. Furthermore, and a different note, during my tenure as BOE President, Bill was a strong advocate for addressing mental health issues in our schools and has made that a priority during his leadership. Bill knows what it means to be a Trustee, a fiduciary. He exemplified it through his courage and leadership during the pandemic by doing what had to be done to reopen our schools, keep students and staff safely in school, protect the District and safeguard the community’s resources. Our community needs Bill’s honesty, experience and integrity on our BOE.

I met Colleen Foley twentyfive years ago when we were both parents active in PTA and SEPTA advocating, fundraising and volunteering in our schools. Her vision for improving the schools and community she loved drove her to seek and win election to the BOE. During her tenure on the BOE, including six years as President, Colleen listened, learned and ultimately led the Board through major construction and bond projects, middle school restructuring, financial and budgetary challenges impacting programs, contract negotiations, policy making and District goal setting in academics,
human resources, finance and communications. As a supervising school nurse, Colleen understands student needs, and has experienced the challenges of the pandemic firsthand. She is skilled in consensus building, yet unafraid to fight the fights that need fighting. She carefully evaluates competing arguments and interests which often happens in K12 school districts with varied stakeholder interests envisions the bigger picture and communicates that vision to the
community. I assure you, with Colleen, what you see is what you get passion, tireless commitment and integrity.

The annual School District Election is on Tuesday May, 17th. Bill Holub and Colleen Foley have the knowledge, experience, and heart that are essential for BOE service. They have earned my vote and I urge you to vote for them on May 17th.

Angela Heineman,
Former Trustee and President,
Garden City Board of Education

Leave a Reply