School board hosts election

Mary Corkery, News Editor

Elections to fill the three open spots on the Rockwood Board of Education will take place on April 4th. 

The St. Louis County Municipal Elections will have multiple school board candidates on the ballot, including six who are running to replace Randy Miller, Keith Kinder, and Lynne Midyett, whose terms expire this year. The candidates are Thomas Dunn, Karen Bachert, Trisha Katzfey, Richard Wierzba, Robert Cadigan, and incumbent Lynne Midyett. See the gallery below to learn more about them. 

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  • Dunn was a director for the BOE from 2019-2022. After his previous tenure on the board, Dunn said he would still like to communicate with the community, help them understand what happens in the district, and represent their concerns “ I really enjoyed learning about all the activities, departments, policies, and components of running one of the largest school districts in the State of Missouri. I feel it is important to be a voice for parents and the community as well as a Board Member who can ask good questions and challenge the status quo. I also want to be a resource to connect parents and students who need specific help with finding and understanding District policies or programs,” Dunn said.

  • A Rockwood alumnus, Bachert attended Lafayette High School and taught in the district for 8 years, and served as president of the PTO and Pond Elementary and Eureka High School. She says one of her main priorities as a board member is making sure each student feels safe and comfortable inside the district, as well as shed more light on the positive aspects of Rockwood. “Unfortunately, there has been a lot of division pitting side against side in our district. I am hoping to change the narrative, have some courageous conversations with stakeholders, and move our district forward in a positive direction. We have a lot to be proud of in Rockwood and if we do not change the culture, it will negatively impact our students and community as a whole,” Barchett said.

  • Cadigan is a West Point alum and left the Army as a captain. He said being married to a Rockwood teacher and having a family that’s involved in the district motivates him to run for election, despite not having any partisan affiliations. Cadigan says that his main goal as a board member is to provide a supportive environment where all students can thrive. “I’d like to see a Rockwood community where we are continually celebrating student success in the news, where our district is recognized for [helping] students reach their potential, regardless of their career choice, and where our parents and teachers are working together to continually improve our community and the overall school experience. It will take cooperation across the Board, Administration, teachers, parents, and yes, students too. However, working together I know there is nothing we cannot accomplish,” Cadigan said.

  • As a small business owner, Wierzba said that his professional experience has equipped him with skills and experience that would help him serve on the BOE. Throughout the district, he said that he would like the focus in schools to stay on promoting academic achievement, including increasing standardized testing scores. Wierzba said that he wants the district to prepare students for their future, no matter what that entails. “My goals as a Board of Education Director are all about you getting the most you can get out of your time here at Summit and getting you guys ready for your next step. I want you to be equipped for what you see as your destiny, whether that means getting you ready for college or trade school, or to invent a product, or run for public office, or sign up to protect our community or our country,” Wierzba said.

  • Katzfey is active in the Missouri Army National Gurad as a Military Police First Seargent, and has served the country for 23 years. As a Missouri Personnel Advisory Council member and Senior HR Noncomissioned Officer, she believes that her leadership experience will help her be a valuable member of the BOE. Katzfey said that she hoped to continue her service by being an advocate for the community. “I have served my country and state, and now want to serve where it matters most: our children. I want my voice to represent our children, educators, taxpayers and parents. Serving is my calling, and I am very excited to serve the Rockwood school district,” Katzfey said.

  • As the current Vice President, Midyett has been on the BOE since 2016 and serves on the Community Outreach and Public Engagement Committee. She says that one of her main initiatives is improving communication between the district and its stakeholders, as well as focusing on Superintendent Curtis Cain’s The Way Forward plan. In her Rockwood career, Midyett said that she has stayed committed to the district and plans to continue her dedication. “The past few years have been challenging, but my commitment to Rockwood never wavered. I stayed the course, I took the heat, and now I am ready to dig in, reenergize, and move forward to provide strong, steady stewardship,” Midyett said.

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