With board members Cindy Cullen and Daniel Petrozelli not being reelected to their positions in the November elections, the board of education took a moment at the Dec. 18 meeting to give them a proper sendoff.
Both were presented with plaques for their service to the board of education, and Cullen also received a gavel, given traditionally to anyone who has served as board president during their years of service.
Board president Evan Lerner spoke on behalf of the board about both Cullen and Petrozelli’s service to the district.
Cullen, Lerner said, has been a member of the board of education for nine years, serving as board president and chair of several of the different committees.
“She’s been an outspoken proponent of raising the bar on curricula and demanding high standards for all matters affecting the district,” he said. “Cindy has also been a strong voice on the board advocating for programs that address more than basic academics, such as athletics, as well as our programs in theatre, music and fine arts. She has been a vocal supporter for fiscal responsibility and for opening up advanced courses for more students at the high school. Lastly, her input helped lead to policy changes that reduced the barriers faced by students seeking to accumulate college credit while in high school.”
“For all these reasons and more, we would like to thanks Cindy for her years of service to the district,” he added.
Of Petrozelli, Lerner said he was required to get up to speed on board matters quickly after he was selected 13 months ago to fill a vacancy. Petrozelli was asked immediately, Lerner said, to chair the police committee.
“I am pleased to report that, as a result of his conscientiousness and preparation, the transition was seamless,” Lerner said. “Making board policy is one of the critical things boards of education do, and Daniel’s leadership in this role helped the board keep pace with both required and elective changes. He provided a unique voice in board deliberations and often raised new and important aspects of the issues under discussion.”
“We thank him for his solid contributions and we appreciate his efforts,” he added.
Both former board members received a round of applause from their peers.
“We wish both Cindy and Daniel the best of luck in future endeavors, and hope that they continue to stay involved with district matters,” Lerner said.
Patrick Breslin, Jacqueline Barlow and Aaron Kurdyla will be sworn into the board of education at Thursday's reorganization meeting.