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Trustee Teicheira: A face of courage
Nancy Teicheira of Trustee Area 4 and Trustee Manuel Medeiros attend a Planet Party a few years ago hosted by the Manteca Unified School Farm. - photo by ROSE ALBANO RISSO

Nancy Teicheira is someone who doesn’t get fazed easily. Time after time, she has shown that she is made of stern stuff – as a farmer, as a wife and mother, as a cancer survivor, and soon-to-be a four-term member of the Manteca Unified School District Board of Trustees.

When she was accused recently of attacking fellow board members for questioning the enforcement of board policies, she stood her ground and publicly stated that she was simply doing her job as an elected representative of the people she serves in the school district.

When she was diagnosed with thymoma, a very rare form of cancer, 14 years ago, and had to undergo chemotherapy treatments at Stanford Medical Center, she again showed that she was made of sterner stuff. She never missed a board meeting, even when the disease recurred two more times in the last three years with a new round of chemo each time. Now, she is again in the middle of another chemo at Stanford because of another recurrence of the disease. Although this latest recurrence gave her pause in the days prior to the deadline of filing re-election papers, her spunky attitude again won the day and went for a fifth term of office as Trustee for Area 4. As luck would have it for this dairy farmer, no challenger came forward which saved her time and money, and especially much needed energy. Instead of pounding the pavements and knocking on doors to get the vote, she was able to use that energy to concentrate her fight against the insidious disease.

Because nobody challenged her at the polls, she will be automatically appointed to her seat like board vice president Evelyn Moore of Trustee Area 5 who is also running unopposed in her bid to serve a sixth term of office.

Her 16 years on the board was marred by a family tragedy when she and husband, Frank Jr., lost their youngest son Daniel in a solo car accident when he was a sophomore at Sierra High School. The only time she missed a school board meeting was to bury her son.

The couple’s three other sons are Frankie III, 36; Steven, 34; and Ryan, 31, who made the Teicheiras grandparents seven times over.

Everyone in the Teicheira family went to Manteca schools, with the exception of Nancy who attended schools in Stockton and Lodi – she graduated from Lodi Union High – and attended Delta College. Teicheira’s husband, a third-generation dairy farmer, is a 1967 graduate of Manteca High where he followed in his father’s footsteps as an athlete. Frank, the family’s late patriarch, was on the Manteca High football team of 1939 which produced a player, Milo Candini, who went on to become a member of the pro baseball Hall of Fame. Frank Jr. played baseball, and continued to play at Delta College and later at Oregon Tech where he received his bachelor’s degree. The couple met at a blind date arranged by Nancy’s friend Wanda. They were married in 1977 at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Manteca.

As a member of the Manteca Board of Education, Teicheira has been known to buck the trend. Her votes have gone against the majority a number of times. Most recently, she voted against the 2014-2015 school year budget because it had a deficit of $9 million which was subsidized by the district’s general fund.

“Never spend more than what you get. Spend money when you get money from the state,” she explained.

She also bucked the board when she voted against Measure G, the school bond, going on the November ballot for much the same reasons. 

“I’m for the safety of the kids,” she said, referring to the reasons behind the school bond money which, for the most part, is earmarked toward keeping old schoolrooms safe by having them repaired up to code.

“I would have been for it (Measure G), but a lot of that” is for the district’s $30 million Going Digital project, she said, for which she holds some reservations.