The School Board Selection Committee, an elected group of 24 independent and non-partisan volunteers representing residents of the Town of Mamaroneck and Villages of Larchmont and Mamaroneck, has endorsed two candidates to fill the upcoming vacancies on the Mamaroneck Board of Education: Nancy Pierson, the current Board President and two-term incumbent, who is seeking a third term on the Board; and James Needham, a 37-year district resident, who is seeking his first term on the Board. “The Selection Committee is fortunate to once again have the opportunity to endorse two highly qualified candidates for the Board of Education,” said Kayvan Heravi, who serves as Chair of the Selection Committee. “Nancy’s experience, commitment, and leadership as the Board’s current President has and will continue to provide the Board with valuable knowledge and a steady influence as it navigates through the continued challenges of delivering high quality, public education. In addition, as a successful financial executive, accountant, and CPA, Jim brings a deep understanding of financial planning and analysis to a Board that is increasingly faced with managing a complex set of financial restrictions and mandates imposed upon the budgeting process by the state legislature.”
The Selection Committee was founded in 1945 to find qualified and committed candidates for the Board of Education. 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. Members of the group spend each year attending school board meetings and study sessions, speaking with district residents and meeting with district officials (including, but not limited to, the Superintendent, members of the Board of Education, and senior representatives of the PTA) in order to familiarize themselves with the issues facing the district. The Committee then seeks out and interviews qualified candidates for upcoming vacancies, with the goal of endorsing and recommending those candidates that it feels can best represent all segments of the community and balance their diverse interests.
Selection Committee members themselves have staggered, three-year terms, and are elected via ballots set up near School Board polling places. For more information on the Selection Committee or how to serve, please visit our website at www.selectioncommittee.org.
Candidates for the School Board are voted on during the May 21st election, the same date as the School Budget vote.
Bios for the two endorsed candidates follow below:
Nancy Pierson is completing her second term on the board, the last two years serving in the positions of Vice President and President, respectively. She is seeking a third term to make use of her knowledge and experiences and to serve as a mentor to a relatively “young” board. She continues to be excited about education, the challenges and potential, and particularly cares about our District from which all three of her daughters have graduated. Nancy participated in the previous Superintendent Search and multiple contract discussions with the various bargaining units. She is currently liaison to Hommocks Middle School and serves on the Policy and Audit Committees.
Prior to her terms on the Board, Nancy was an active PTA member who served in many roles, including Co-President of SEPTA, MHS PTSA and PT Council. She was a Parent Member on the Committee of Special Education for over 10 years. Within recent years, Nancy volunteered as a Reading Tutor at Hommocks Middle School.
Nancy grew up in Pennsylvania, attended Colgate University and has a Masters Degree in Communication Disorders from Emerson College. She has lived in Larchmont with her husband, Frank, and family for 20 years.
Jim Needham and his wife, Leslie, have lived in Larchmont for 37 years. Their daughter went to Central, Hommocks, Rye Country Day School and then to Brown University. Their son went to Central, Hommocks, MHS and then to Yale.
Believing that the changing needs of the marketplace and the skills needed to compete in the global economy should be the drivers of our District’s education strategy, Jim believes his business background and life experience will provide a positive perspective to the board.
Jim founded Fieldston Investors in 1989. Prior to starting Fieldston Investors he was a partner at Arthur Young & Company (Ernst & Young) where he was National Director of the Merger & Acquisition Group. Prior to Arthur Young, Jim was Director of Business Development at Corning and an auditor and consultant at Peat, Marwick, Mitchell (KPMG) in New York. Jim has had a career in private equity investing and advising middle market companies.
He is Chairman of SPC, the nation’s leading manufacturer of passive heat dissipating enclosures for “last mile” applications for the telecommunications industry. Jim serves on the board of Stone Source, a leading distributor of high-end natural stone, ceramic, glass and metal tiles, engineered stones and other decorative surfaced products sold through architects, designers and contractors. He is also on the board of Hoffco, a provider of wood accessories to the cabinet industry. Jim has been a guest lecturer at the Fordham University Graduate School of Business. He co-founded the Park Avenue Bank in New York City. The bank was sold in 1989 when he founded Fieldston Investors.
Jim Needham has a BS in Accounting from Fordham University and is a Certified Public Accountant.