The Menomonee Falls School Board will continue into April sans one of its members.
The board opted not to appoint a replacement for former School Board Member Lori Blodorn, and will continue one member short until after the election in April. Blodorn was hired by the school district in December to serve as a human resources manager. She replaced Ken Kubreka, and has served in the position since the beginning of January.
The School Board was in a unique situation heading into April. Current board members Scott Ternes and Faith VanderHorst both will run for another term on the board. Michele Divelbiss, who ran for a seat in the last election, was the only other resident to file candidacy papers for the April election. Essentially, the board could have just appointed Divelbiss to give her a head start on the board.
Divelbiss came up short in last year’s contentious School Board race, behind David Noshay and newcomer Paul Tadda. However, Divelbiss garnered 22 percent of the vote. She also serves as Valley View Elementary Parent Teacher Association President.
Board President Ron Bertieri suggested operating the board a seat short until April since there are no major votes on the horizon. In April, the School Board will proceed to appoint seats on its various committees as it does after every election.
Blodorn's background key
Superintendent Patricia Greco said Blodorn was hired from a candidate pool of applicants with human resources experience. However, she said Blodorn’s experience in law helped her rise above other candidates.
“Lori has specific experience in contract law, employment law, succession planning, business plans, negotiations, collective bargaining, insurance reviews, and non-discrimination testing,” Greco said in an email to Patch. “She is committed to the community and service.”
Blodorn’s responsibilities include contract management, regional benchmarking, employee benefits management, and legal compliance of the district. Greco said Blodorn’s position on the School Board made the decision to hire her more difficult.
“Her board service did not assist the team in making the decision for selection, it actually made it more challenging to for the team,” Greco said. “Yet in the end, they believed having the best skilled candidate working within the role was the obligation of their recommendation for the position.”
Greco added that school volunteers have been hired in the past to work in the district.
“In the same decision making process, the principals have an obligation to make the decision to hire the best teaching candidates for our schools based on skills and abilities, not solely the relationship,” Greco said.