Applications being accepted for vacant school board seat

School District 51 will accept candidates for a vacant school board seat through July 23.

The board plans to interview candidates and select one to appoint to the seat at a public meeting July 30 at the Basil T. Knight Center. The time of the meeting is tentatively set for 4 p.m. but the time may change based on how many applicants show interest in the District C seat, which the board officially declared vacant Tuesday after the sudden passing of 69-year-old board member Harry Butler on June 2.

Anyone interested in the seat may submit a resume and a letter of interest by July 23 to ATTN: Mrs. Terri N. Wells, 2115 Grand Ave., Grand Junction, CO 81501. Applicants should also submit a sworn affidavit before that deadline that confirms the candidate has lived within District 51 boundaries for at least 12 consecutive months, has not been convicted of a sexual offense against a child, and lives within District C boundaries.

The boundary lines of the five board member districts are available online at  District C stretches from north-central to central-east Grand Junction.

A candidate will be appointed by a majority of board members at the July 30 meeting or, if the board is split 2-2 on candidates, Board President Greg Mikolai will break the tie. The appointment will last through November, when all candidates for Butler’s term-limited seat in District C will have to run for election.

Board members and district staff paid tribute to Butler at Tuesday’s board meeting by reading a resolution recognizing his eight years of service to the board. Butler’s wife, Danielle, and daughter, Janielle Westermire, were present for the reading of the resolution.

“I know we’ll all miss Harry. I just thank you for loving him as much as I did,” Danielle Butler told the audience at the board meeting.

Westermire asked that everyone who loved her father carry on his legacy by following his example.

“Do for others without any hesitation,” she said.


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Let’s hope the School Board finds someone as dedicated as Harry.  Whoever occupies this position has big shoes to fill.

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