Nevada County Board of Education names new trustee |

Nevada County Board of Education names new trustee

Heino Nicolai was named a provisional trustee by the Nevada County Board of Education Wednesday,
Photo by Liz Kellar/ |

Former and current staff and trustees from the Nevada County Board of Education said farewell to outgoing trustee Bob Altieri Wednesday, before interviewing prospective replacements and then appointing one provisionally later that afternoon.

A chorus that included former Superintendent of Schools Holly Hermansen serenaded Altieri with a version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” that offered up various highlights of his nearly quarter-century-long tenure. Altieri announced his resignation to the board and the Nevada County Superintendent of Schools in a Nov. 1 letter, one year shy of the end of his fifth term. The business broker and certified appraiser had served on the board since 1994.

The board solicited applications for a trustee to serve out Altieri’s term, with questions regarding educational background and experience with Nevada County’s school system, as well as an analysis of the applicant’s strengths and time commitment.

Four applications were received, but only three of the prospective trustees — Caleb Buckley, Heino Nicolai and Katy Schwarz — showed up for interviews during Wednesday’s board meeting. Schwarz has served on the boards of the Penn Valley Union Elementary School District and the Pleasant Valley School District, and most recently on the board for Nevada Joint Union High School District. Buckley is the former director of Yuba River Charter School and currently works in Sacramento, although he still lives in Nevada County.

After the interviews, the trustees chose Nicolai, who has served on the board for the Clear Creek Elementary School District as well as on the Nevada County School Board Association.

Nicolai was sworn in to serve as a trustee through November 2018 and took Altieri’s place at the table, joking he will never be able to fill his shoes.

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at

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