Nevada Joint Union High School board to interview six candidates for vacant seat |

Nevada Joint Union High School board to interview six candidates for vacant seat

Six applicants are vying to fill the open seat on the Nevada Joint Union High School District Board of Trustees.

The candidates will be interviewed by the board at its Wednesday meeting, which is set to begin at 6 p.m. in the science lecture hall at Nevada Union High School. Each candidate will have five minutes to address the board, and board members will have the opportunity to ask follow-up questions.

The board is expected to appoint its new member by majority vote following the interviews; the chosen candidate will then be immediately sworn into office.

The six candidates who applied for the position have wide variety of backgrounds and experiences, according to application materials submitted to the district office. The candidates include:

— Heino Nicolai, who previously served on the Clear Creek Elementary School District Board of Trustees for 18 years, and is the parent of two Nevada Union High School graduates.

— Jamie Reeves, who graduated from Nevada Union High School in 1998 and has spent the last six years working in higher education research; Reeves has two children who currently attend Union Hill Elementary School, where Reeves serves on the school site council.

— Janice Bedayn, a parent to one Nevada Union graduate and one current student; Bedayn serves as the director of development at the Nevada City School of the Arts, and also served as that school’s board chair from 2004-2012.

— Paul Haas, who has three years of experience as a reporter and anchor for KNCO talk radio, and has nearly three decades of experience in education. Haas ran for Nevada County Superintendent of Schools in 2014, but lost to Holly Hermansen.

— Ray Shine, a local attorney who has two children enrolled in the high school district; Shine served as a member of the Nevada County Board of Education from 1997-98 and of the Mount St. Mary Academy school board from 1982-1988. He has taught part-time for 18 years at the Sierra College Nevada County campus.

— Sally Kearney, a 23-year resident of Nevada County who has spent 14 years as a substitute teacher in the high school district; before moving to Nevada County, Kearney states she was the director of human resources for a billion dollar bank.

The candidate chosen by the board will step into the seat vacated by former Trustee Georgie Coulter, who resigned from her position effective Jan. 6. At the time, Board President Katy Schwarz said Coulter’s resignation was prompted by recent “health issues,” but declined to comment further on Coulter’s condition.

Coulter had served on the board since 2006.

The appointed candidate will serve the remainder of Coulter’s term, which runs through November 2018, and will represent trustee Area 2, which includes downtown Grass Valley.

This is the second time this school year the board has made an appointment to fill an open seat. In October, the board voted 3-1 to appoint Michael Freedman, a local entrepreneur and teacher, to fill the seat vacated by former board Vice President Jim Adams.

Adams resigned from the board Sept. 30 after he moved out of trustee Area 4, the area he represented on the board.

Freedman is serving the remainder of Adams’s term, which runs through November 2016.

The agenda for Wednesday night’s board meeting is posted online at

To contact Staff Writer Emily Lavin, email or call 530-477-4230.

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