Elections

Keller school district Places 4 and 5

Place 4

Peiman Montazeri

Age: 43

Occupation: Business operations specialist — finance/operations/project lead at Bell Helicopter

City of residence: Fort Worth

Campaign website: Website is currently being worked on. 

Education background, including all degrees: MBA in Finance & Accounting from Salisbury University (Salisbury, MD). BBA in Finance from Texas Christian University (Fort Worth, TX). BA in Sociology from Texas Christian University (Fort Worth, TX)

Briefly list your current and past civic involvement: Previously, My past civic involvement includes serving on the School Board at Kids R’ Kids (Keller) for 2 years. In addition, I have volunteered as a builder for Habitat for Humanity along with a volunteer at the Fort Worth Food Bank. Currently, my family and I are active donors to Meals on Wheels, the United Way and Goodwill.

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

We need to do more with less. Building more schools or more space at existing schools so our kids and teachers are not teaching out of portables. With strict budgets, this is a more difficult task without attaining other sources of funding without raising taxes, if possible.  Also, I believe that we need to find ways to bring in more counselors or additional outlets and/or forums that our kids can feel safe in to discuss issues and concerns that they may be experiencing or are witnessing. Lastly, we need to provide each school the adequate technology and tools to keep kids engaged and help them succeed. 

What is your top priority if elected to office?

I plan on continuing to find ways to attract and retain the best talent to Keller ISD. We need to provide our teachers with the necessary tools so that they can provide our children the tools, skills, and knowledge needed to succeed and strive as they grow. We need to create environments in the classrooms that encourages our kids to want to learn. That environment starts with our Teachers. We need to look into incentives or merit-based compensation for our outstanding teachers. We need to find ways as parents and a community to give our educators the tools to make our kids successful in life.

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

Although I do not have a background as an educator, I believe that my business background and experiences will help find solutions to raise capital, set budgets and forecasts and assist on negotiations. I monitor budgets, spending and expenses to keep projects on target and plan.  I have experience in leadership and a vast knowledge of mentoring my peers and staff to help them grow and succeed in their careers. In addition, having a child in the Keller ISD, will motivate me to make the best decisions for our children and community as a whole.

Christopher Roof

Age: 48

Occupation: Director of custom contracting

City of residence: Fort Worth

Campaign website: www.facebook.com/chrisroof4kisd/

Education background, including all degrees: L.D. Bell High School ’86; University of Texas at Arlington ’99 (BBA in Accounting); University of Dallas ’07 (MBA – Business Management)

Briefly list your current and past civic involvement: PTA – Hillwood Middle School and Central High School; Watchdog at Parkwood Hill Intermediate School

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

1) District leadership – We need to find a new superintendent that can move Keller ISD into the future, not just maintain the status quo. 2) School Finance – There is a need to move from deficit spending to a balanced budget in the coming year as well as a bottom-up build of the budget to identify unnecessary spending. 3) Student preparedness for life after high school – We have state testing to ensure we’re meeting minimum requirements but nothing to measure preparedness for college in the sophomore or junior year. I would suggest evaluating testing options above and beyond minimums. 

is your top priority if elected to office?

My top priority, if elected to office, will be to help Keller ISD find a new superintendent to take us into the future. The organization I work for has helped me understand that what helped you build the business you have today isn’t necessarily what you will need to compete in the future. Keller ISD should be a district that other districts view as the benchmark in Texas. To get there, we need great leadership with new and innovative ideas to move us that direction.

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

I have over 30 years’ experience in business here in North Texas. I have a strong financial mind that will complement the skillsets of other board members and add to the diversity of background and thought. With 20 years in the healthcare industry, focusing on driving costs out of world-class healthcare systems, I will work toward a goal of driving more dollars into the classroom. My passion for kids shows in the work that I do as the deacon for the middle school in my church. I’m a good listener and will work hard for the people in Keller ISD.

Place 5

Frank Arban

Age: 34

Occupation: Certification manager

City of residence: Fort Worth

Campaign website: www.facebook.com/ArbanForKeller

Education background, including all degrees: Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Engineering (Minor in Computer Science) from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach, FL

Briefly list your current and past civic involvement: I have been an active member of the PTAs at every school my son has attended since kindergarten. I spent several years as part of the America Reads / Math Counts program in Daytona Beach public schools working with students in groups and one-on-one. In Virginia, I was a probationary member of the local volunteer fire department until moving. I currently volunteer with KISD schools as part of the Watch D.O.G.S. (Dads of Great Students) program and for in-classroom events. I also volunteer at the Tarrant Area Food Bank organizing meal boxes and performing quality control.

Office you have sought and or held: I held several leadership positions in student organizations while in college. I served as Propsmaster, Vice President, and President of the Riddle Players, our school’s theatre company. I was elected Hall Representative for the Embry-Riddle Resident Student Association, where I conveyed my residence hall’s concerns, needs, and ideas to the general board. I was also a founding member of the Embry-Riddle GSA and served as Vice President until graduation.

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

Funding: We need to be good stewards of taxpayer money, ensure that expenditures add value to our children’s education, and continue the fight at the state level for equitable funding. Equality: Where some voted against them in the past, I support protections for targeted groups of students and will stand up for all who face bullying or harassment. Vouchers: Recent studies show that public school students outperform their private school counterparts and that private school vouchers cost taxpayers more. With legislators pushing vouchers, we need to ensure that Keller ISD remains a district where parents want to educate their children.

What is your top priority if elected to office?

If elected, my top priority will always be ensuring that every child in the district has a fair chance to succeed, academically and personally. I want my daughter to have the same opportunities when she starts school in 5 years that my son has now. When my wife and I moved to Fort Worth, we chose a home in the Keller school district because of its quality. I will work tirelessly to keep the performance and standards of our schools high, ensure that we attract and retain exemplary teachers, and offer a diversity of programs, from sports to fine arts.

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

As a father of two young children, I have a vested interest in the entire school system, from pre-k through high school. I believe in public education, and have worked or volunteered in schools ranging from struggling to exceptional. I have personally seen students succeed in both settings by providing them with engagement and attention. Professionally, my drive and dedication to performing duties to the best of my ability led me from an entry-level position in 2008 to a managerial position at an international aviation company by 2014. As a manager, I work regularly with managing budgets and decision making.

Candy Bruton

Age: 62

Occupation: Registered nurse

City of residence: Keller

Campaign website: Facebook- Candy Bruton for KISD Place 5

Education background, including all degrees: BSN, MSN (Nursing Education), RNC-NIC

Briefly list your current and past civic involvement: I have been a past member of the PTA, president of the Keller High School Cheerleading Booster Club, and I volunteer quarterly as a car seat technician for Safe Kids Tarrant County.

Office you have sought and or held: None, however, I have chaired numerous committees at work.

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

Overall Keller ISD is a successful school district. One issue to be addressed is educating the whole child. It is import to build upon students strengths in academic and non-academic areas as well as promoting social and emotional intelligence. Surveys have shown that technology is lacking within our district. We need to find ways to train staff to integrate technology as well as build resources to better prepare our students. Right now there is not an equitable system for funding public schools which in the future could put Keller ISD in a financial bind so budgeting and advocating for a fair system is essential.

What is your top priority if elected to office?

My campaign is about working together to find compassion and engagement for excellence in KISD. Compassion is about understanding the needs of our population of students and striving to find ways to serve those needs. Engagement is making sure that our students are engaged and our community is engaged. My top priority is to make sure we are serving children and when tough decisions have to be made whether about budget or something else that we remember who we serve. We can still do that and be financially responsible through creative problem solving.

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

As a nurse I am able to work as a team member, solve problems through collaboration, and value the opinions of others. I am able to help assess the needs of vulnerable children and foster collaboration with community partners. I have lived in KISD for 36 years and have had three children attend Keller ISD schools. All three of my children had different needs. have a child with learning differences and a child who is gifted. As a board member I will advocate for what is best for students based on my profession and my own experiences.

Beverly Dixon

Age: 47

Occupation: Retired naval officer

City of residence: Keller

Campaign website: www.bevdixon.com and www.facebook.com/Dixon4KISDKids/

Education background, including all degrees: B.S., Natural Resources: Marine and Coastal Resources, North Carolina State University

Office you have sought and or held: No publicly elected positions. President, Willis Lane Elementary PTA; Board member: Willis Lane Elementary, South Keller Intermediate, and Indian Springs Middle School. Board Member, Medical Service Corps Officer Association.  

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

Keller ISD is an excellent school district with no critical issues at this moment. Challenges will arise, and I will do my best to make informed decisions. Through my involvement with the Bond Advisory Committee and the Bond Oversight Committee, I have witnessed the successes of the 2014 Bond projects. Over 1.3 million dollars have already been returned to the district from projects completed under budget. People move here specifically for the schools, and as a board member, it’s my responsibility to ensure we maintain that level of excellence and continue to find ways to improve.  

What is your top priority if elected to office?

My top priority, if elected, will be to protect the interests of Keller ISD and its students.   As a trustee, I will be an advocate for public education. The students and the teachers in the classroom come first. I am fiscally conservative and believe in spending money in a manner that best meets the needs of the district. I believe in local control and will serve as a voice for the community. It will be my responsibility to engage all concerned stakeholders in a respectful manner. I will work diligently with fellow board members, the Superintendent, and the district.

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

I have been actively engaged in Keller ISD since moving here. I served on the PTA boards at Willis Lane Elementary, South Keller Intermediate, and Indian Springs Middle School, to include President at WLES. I graduated from the first KISD Community Ambassadors class.  I served on two Campus Educational Improvement Committees (CEIC) and the Community Bond Advisory Committee. I currently serve on two PTAs, one CEIC, and the Community Bond Oversight Committee. I am engaged and firmly support the district’s mission. The success of our students is my priority and will continue to be should I be elected.  

Sherry Simon

Age: 52

Occupation: Nonprofit executive, registered/licensed dietitian; vice president of nutrition and health programs Meals On Wheels of Tarrant County.

City of residence: Fort Worth

Campaign website: ssimonokc.wixsite.com/simonsays

Education background, including all degrees: BS Nutrition, University of Texas at Austin; MBA Coursework, University of North Texas

Briefly list your current and past civic involvement:

Keller ISD District Education Improvement Committee

Superintendent Search Firm Committee

School Foodservice/Nutrition Advisory Committee

Parents Advocating Gifted Education-Board Member

Lone Star Elementary

PTA President-3 times

Chair of Lone Star After Dark

Campus Education Improvement Committee

Received PTA Lifetime Membership Award

Friendship Elementary

PTA President

Campus Education Improvement Committee

Parkwood Hill Intermediate

PTA Board Member

PAWS Chair

Hillwood Middle School

Campus Education Improvement Committee

Central High School

Campus Education Improvement Committee

Theatre Booster Club Board Member

Central Singers Booster Club Board Member

Lone Star Show Choir Invitational Event Chair

Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation

Volunteer/QPR (Suicide Prevention) Gatekeeper Trainer

PACK It Up (Parents Assisting College-Bound Kids)

Founder of Group

College Counselor/Mentor

Free services to students needing help with college applications

URJ Greene Family Camp

Volunteer/Camp Dietitian

Blue Zones

Committee Member

Tarrant County Food Policy Council

Board Member

Texas Christian University, Nutrition Department

Adjunct Faculty

Advisory Committee Member

Dallas Fort Worth Hospital Council Foundation

Community Health Collaborative Member

John Peter Smith Hospital CEO Joint Council

Member

Beth El Congregation

Board Member

Junior Youth Group Co-Advisor

Sisterhood President

In 100 words or less, what are the three most critical problems facing the public office you are seeking and the solutions you proposed to address them?

1.Adequate and sustained public school funds. As a member of the Board, I will work closely with the Superintendent to maintain adequate funding by ensuring KISD offers an exceptional product, a superior education system.

2. One size fits all. Each student is an individual with their own strengths, weaknesses, goals, and dreams. To be a superior education system, individualized education plans created by students and parents in partnership with schools will measure student growth and goal achievement.

3. Community inclusion. Embracing and integrating diversity into our educational process will prepare all students for success in a culturally diverse world.

What is your top priority if elected to office?

My top priority is ensuring every single child is successful using all of the resources available in the community. I believe there are many untapped people in various positions within our community who can provide expertise to the school district. It is imperative that we engage experts in our school district. Also, I will look to other school districts for best practices or solutions implemented to provide a roadmap on addressing issues we face. I feel there are no-cost or low cost solutions that will address my three critical issues (appropriate funding, individualized education, and diversity in KISD).

Why are you best qualified candidate for this office?

I passionately advocate for students and their basic need to feel secure in their community and school. I am comfortable asking tough questions and having difficult conversations to create win-win solutions! I have led and volunteered in many different capacities in the Keller schools for over 15 years. I want to continue supporting my community, and I will work hard to ensure all KISD students receive the same amazing opportunities my three children have received through KISD. I will listen, advocate, organize and communicate to unite the community in support of all students.

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