The School Board Selection Committee serving the Larchmont/Mamaroneck community has nominated three candidates for the three open positions on next year’s Mamaroneck School Board of Education.
Here’s more from the committee on their selection:
The committee has picked Robin Nichinsky, the current School Board President, who is seeking a third 3-year term on the board and two newly endorsed candidates, Melany Gray and Roger Martin who seek to fill the two seats that will be vacated by board members Anant Nambiar and Linnet Tse.
“The committee considered a large number of interested applicants this year, before finally endorsing Ms. Gray and Mr. Martin, and Ms. Nichinsky. We are confident that our group effort will aid voters on May 15th,” said Frieda Kraft, Co-Chair of the Selection Committee, an independent volunteer group that screens and endorses candidates for The Board.
The Selection Committee was founded in 1945 to find qualified and committed candidates for the Board. This independent nonpartisan and self-funded organization is made up of 24 private citizens who are elected representatives from each of the four elementary school areas in Larchmont and Mamaroneck. The group meets with the schools’ superintendent and various School Board members and PTA Council Chairs to familiarize itself with the issues facing the district in order to represent all segments of the community and their interests.
Selection Committee members themselves have staggered, three-year terms, and must be elected via ballots set up near School Board polling places. There are still opportunities to serve on next year’s Selection Committee. For more information, visit the Committee’s web site www.selectioncommittee.org.
Candidates for the School Board are selected by general election during the School Budget Vote on May 15th.
Bios for the three endorsed candidates follow below:
Melany Gray and her husband have resided in Larchmont for 21 years. Their two sons attended Central School, the Hommocks, and MHS; their youngest is a senior at MHS. Ms Gray received her BS from the University of North Carolina, and her J.D. from St John’s University School of Law. Currently, Ms Gray is a part-time associate attorney for Collazo, Florentino & Keil in New York. Ms Gray has been a past president of the Central and Hommocks PTAs, the MHS PTSA, as well as PT Council. She has written about everything from district budget negotiations to school awards ceremonies for the on-line local news resource, The Larchmont Gazette (no longer in publication). The committee was deeply impressed by Ms Gray’s breadth of knowledge of the workings of the school board, and her capability to remain objective on a variety of different issues that currently concern the district.
Roger Martin and his wife have resided in Mamaroneck since 2008, when they returned to Dr. Martin’s family home. The Martins have two grown daughters. Dr. Martin attended Mamaroneck Ave School, and graduated from Mamaroneck High School. He holds bachelors degrees from Drew and Yale and the doctor of philosophy from Oxford. Currently, Mr. Martin volunteers with seniors at MHS, as they prepare for the college admissions process. He served as President of both Moravian College, from 1986 – 1997, President of Randolph-Macon College, from 1997 – 2006 and was and Associate Dean of Harvard Divinity School. Dr. Martin is author of Racing Odysseus: A College President Becomes a Freshman Again.
With his deep respect for our school district, Dr. Martin wishes to learn, lead, and listen while participating in the complex workings of public education in the current climate of external budget restraints, and increased cost burdens placed on local districts. His three decades of financial and managerial expertise impressed the committee members, as well as his professional rapport and deep appreciation for the necessary elements of making change happen in a successful public education system.
Robin Nichinsky, in her first two terms, immersed herself in the complex issues facing our School District, including a national superintendent search and collective bargaining negotiations. She looks forward to using her hard-won knowledge, experience and skills to meet the needs of our community through a challenging climate and help the District maintain an excellent quality education for our children. Ms. Nichinsky serves on the school district Finance Committee, Communications Committee and is a board liaison to Chatsworth Elementary School, the Mamaroneck Schools Foundation and attends TVS (Town, Village, School) meetings with our municipalities, along with Dr. Shaps and Meryl Rubenstein. IN the past, she has served as liaison to Mamaroneck High School, Murray Avenue, MAS, Elementary schools, as well as SEPTA and the Teacher’s Institute.
A practicing attorney, Robin has a law degree from Benjamin N. Cardozo Law School and a Masters in Guidance and Counseling from the College of New Rochelle. She served as Chair of the Mamaroneck-Larchmont Human Rights Commission, Co-President of Central School, a PTA Vice President at Hommocks and Mamaroneck High Schools, and co-founded Central School’s CORE Conflict Resolution Program. Robin and her husband Seth Schafler have lived in our community for 24 years. Their daughters Eliza, Anna and Samantha all attended Mamaroneck District Schools.