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Stark to lead Salmon River school board

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By ANDY GARDNER

FORT COVINGTON - The Salmon River Central School District Board of Education voted in a veteran board member as its president at a special meeting Monday night to fill a vacancy after her predecssor resigned in December following her conviction in Canada on a cigarette smuggling charge.

The board voted to appoint Judith Stark as the new president, with board members Michael Sisto and Linda Durant voting against her appointment. Board member Robert Durant abstained, but did not cite a reason.

Ms. Stark was nominated by board member Emily Lauzon.

Ms. Lauzon was unanimously voted as new vice president, after being nominated by board member Clarissa Chatland.

The board also decided by a 6-2 margin to hold an election on March 19 to fill a vacant board seat, which had been held by former board president Stacy Skidders. She resigned Dec. 21. The dissenting votes were Mr. Sisto and Linda Durant.

The items were voted on following an executive session that lasted roughly 90 minutes. Ms. Stark, who held the position of board vice president at the start of the meeting, said the board was closing the doors was “to discuss correspondence from our attorney.” The board voted 6 to 1 to enter executive session, with Robert Durant voting nay.

Once the board resumed regular session, Ms. Stark and Ms. Lauzon were the only two nominees and the votes were carried out with no discussion.

Ms. Stark is in her 15th year as a board of education member at Salmon River, having held the position of vice president for about three years. It is her first time serving as president.

“I’m looking forward to moving ahead and making Salmon River the best it can be,” she said following the meeting.

Ms. Lauzon is also in her 15th year on the board and had previously served as vice president for two years.

“I’m looking forward to the challenges and working with the board members and (Superintendant of Schools) Jane Collins and her staff,” she said after Monday’s meeting. “I have a lot of community members looking forward to coming to school here, and I want to make it the best place for our students.”

Ms. Collins said she feels the board made a good choice.

“I think the board has chosen a very strong, qualified, and experienced board president and vice president,” she stated. “Both are very dedicated to their roles as board members and have nothing but the students’ best interests at heart.”

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