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Gebhardt seeking Area 4 seat on SJCOE board

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Gebhardt seeking Area 4 seat on SJCOE board

Vern Gebhardt, left, is shown chatting with retired East Union Principal Dick Durham at a Soroptimist event in December.

POSTED February 21, 2014 1:17 a.m.

Two of the five members of the San Joaquin County Board of Education are ending their terms this year. They are Jill Fritchen who represents Area 3, and Anthony Gutierrez of Area 4.

Fritchen, who was formerly board president and currently serves as board vice president, serves the geographical area that includes parts of the Manteca and Stockton unified school districts. She lives in Weston Ranch.

Board member Gutierrez, who has been on in office since July of 1996, covers an area that includes parts of Lincoln, Stockton, Tracy and also Manteca unified school districts.

The last day for interested individuals to file their election papers for the county Board of Education is Friday, March 7.

While there is no filing fee required by the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters, would-be candidates for the county Board of Education are required to pay to have their candidate’s statements of up to 200 words printed on the ballot. The cost for each candidate depends on the population in the area where they are seeking to be elected. The standard charge is $3 per voter, according to Registrar of Voters Austin G. Erdman. A candidate running in Area 3 has to pay $1,700. For those who want to represent Area 4, the cost per candidate is $1,900.

Former Manteca Unified Board of Trustee Vern Gebhardt – he represented Area 5 – has announced he is running for the seat that is being vacated by Anthony Gutierrez of Area 4. Gebhardt retired while he was the athletic director at Sierra High. His retirement capped a 27-year career as an educator and coach in the Manteca Unified School District.

If elected in the June primary elections, Gebhardt would be the second from Manteca to sit on the county Board of Education. Janet Dyk, also a former employee of Manteca Unified and the coordinator of AgVenture, is the representative of Area 1 for which she was elected two years ago.

Mark Thiel of Area 2 and Dave Sorgent of Area 5 round out the five-member panel of the county Board of Education.

The June elections Is not just for the board members who are termed out this year. The county Office of Education is also conducting an election for the person to succeed Superintendent Mick Founts who has announced he is retiring when the school year ends in June.

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