Nevada Joint Union High School District Board of Trustees appoints new member |

Nevada Joint Union High School District Board of Trustees appoints new member

Jamie Reeves, a 1998 graduate of Nevada Union High School who works in higher education research, is the newest member of the Nevada Joint Union High School District Board of Trustees.

The board at its Wednesday night meeting voted 3-0 to appoint Reeves to its vacant seat. Trustee Linda Campbell abstained from voting.

Five other candidates applied for the position — Heino Nicolai, Janice Bedayn, Ray Shine, Sally Kearney and Paul Haas. Haas, a longtime Nevada County educator who unsuccessfully ran for county Superintendent of Schools in 2014, withdrew his application for the vacant seat prior to the meeting. Haas spoke during the public comment portion of the meeting, noting he was informed Tuesday of a potential conflict of interest; his wife, Tamara, is a teacher at Silver Springs High School, and would not be eligible to accept extra-duty assignments or promotions if Haas served on the district board.

The five final candidates were interviewed by the board at Wednesday’s meeting.

During Reeves’s opportunity to address the board, she stressed her involvement as a parent on the Union Hill School site council, as well as her background working in higher education research for an Oregon college. Reeves currently works for the nonprofit Educause, which aims to advance higher education through the use of technology.

Her job experience leads her to make “data-driven decisions,” Reeves said. She told the board there are a lot of different ways it can collect crucial data to inform their discussions.

“I’m definitely a firm believer that if we need more information, we find more information,” Reeves said.

Reeves, 35, grew up in Nevada County, and attended Bell Hill Academy and Lyman Gilmore Middle School before attending Nevada Union.

She told board members she was “excited to collaborate for our kids.”

“I cannot think of a better reason to come together to make really hard but important decisions then educating the next generation of our community,” Reeves said.

After the board interviewed candidates and held a short discussion, Trustee Marty Mortensen nominated Reeves to fill the vacant seat. The motion was seconded by board President Katy Schwarz, but was not passed after trustees Linda Campbell and Michael Freedman cast dissenting votes.

Freedman then motioned to appoint Bedayn, a high school district parent who serves as the development director at the Nevada City School of the Arts; the motion died when it received no second. Freedman also nominated Shine, a local attorney who has two children enrolled in the high school district; that motion died when it received no second.

Campbell nominated Nicolai, who previously served on the Clear Creek Elementary School District Board of Trustees for 18 years. That motion was seconded by Schwarz, but failed to pass when Freedman and Mortensen dissented.

The trustees then called Nicolai and Reeves back up to the podium to answer follow-up questions.

After the second round of interviews, Mortensen motioned to appoint Reeves; the motion was seconded by Freedman and then approved by majority vote.

Reeves will fill the board seat that formerly belonged to Georgie Coulter. Coulter, 86, resigned for her position effective Jan. 6 due to what Schwarz called “health issues.” Coulter had served on the board since 2006.

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

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

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