, Newburyport, MA

Local News

October 29, 2013

Incumbent Koen lists priorities


Candidate’s statement:

I am seeking re-election to continue the work in progress. I am dedicated to public education in Newburyport. Our schools are our future, and ultimately reflect the strengths and values of our unique community. I believe that thoughtful dialogue and debate leads to informed decisions. I am committed to this process and promise to work for consensus from the committee. A top priority is to support all effiorts that strengthen teachers’ abilities to motivate all students to value every bit of knowledge, and develop a desire to continue to learn outside of the classroom.

A second priority is to work with the school and building committee to ensure the school building projects are completed on time and on budget. The schools need to be symbols of a community that values the education of its children.

My third priority is to continue to work toward transparency in the budget process. The budget is complex and projections are difficult. It takes experience to ask the questions about what value is realized in every dollar in every cost center of the budget.

Age: 48

Years in Newburyport: 8

Family: married to Donna for 25 years; children, Hannah and Jeffrey

Education: graduated from Bishop Fenwick High School in 1983; attended Norwich University 1983-85; attended Salem State, 1987; graduated South West Florida Criminal Justice Academy, 1988; attended Lesley University, 2003-2005

Current employment: worked at UFP technologies manufacturing facility, Georgetown, since 2010 as a factory mechanic/machinist

Past employment: Evergreen Valley Golf Course greenskeeper/mechanic, family-owned business, 2005-2010; Lakeside School, Peabody, residential director, 1985 to 1988, then 1990 to 2005, part-time counselor 2005-07; police officer, Fort Meyers, Fla., 1988 and 1989

Political experience/public service: elected to Newburyport School Committee, 2009; currently serves on the School Building Committee, contract negotiations team, Finance subcommittee; have served on Policy, Communications and Buildings and Capital subcommittees.

Top three priorities:

1. Provide support to Newburyport Superintendent Susan Viccaro and her leadership team.

2. Continue to work with Building Committee to ensure projects are completed on time and on budget.

3. Work with Angela Bik, assistant superintendent of curriculum, to support efforts to implement new Common Core standards.

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