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School-board candidates address questions

The Coastline Pilot asked each of the five candidates running for the Laguna Beach School Board -- Ketta Brown; Kelly Cornwell; Jeff Elghanayan; Betsy Jenkins; and Theresa O'Hare -- three questions. The election w

October 20, 2006

The Coastline Pilot asked each of the five candidates running for Laguna Beach School Board three questions. Three seats are open on the board. The election will take place Tuesday, Nov. 7.

The candidates are: Ketta Brown; Kelly Cornwell; Jeff Elghanayan; Betsy Jenkins; and Theresa O'Hare.

The questions and candidates' responses appear below.

KETTA BROWN

Q. Why do you think you should be elected to the Laguna Beach School Board?

A. It is time to take a more dynamic role in the future of the Laguna Beach Unified School District. I am an excellent communicator with an honest, direct leadership style that will benefit the district.

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With three children in the district, I have been actively volunteering for 12 years and have extensive knowledge of most aspects of the district. I have been PTA president at Top of the World, Thurston Middle School and Laguna Beach High School and have held board positions with various PTAs for years.

I have also been or am a board member of Friendship Shelter, Laguna Presbyterian Church and the Laguna Beach High School Scholarship Foundation. I was instrumental in spearheading the drive to halt Sacramento's denying our Basic Aid status.

Before becoming a parent, I worked in the finance industry, most recently for Wilshire Associates in their asset management division (more than $1.3 billion under management at the time).

This professional experience has given me great respect for how public monies are utilized.

I feel this combination of volunteer and work experience gives me the tools to be a successful board member. I believe in public education, but only with diligent and passionate involvement from those on the board will our students be provided with the superior education they deserve.

Q. What will be your primary goal if elected, and how will you achieve it?

A. My primary goal will be to improve communication and to further healthy discourse between the various stakeholders in the district and the board. Many members of the community feel left out of "the loop" on topics that directly affect them.

We need to be more proactive in the way information is disseminated to everyone: students, parents, faculty, classified staff and the community at large.

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