Five candidates compete for four seats on MAPS Board of Education | #Education


Five candidates are on the ballot for next Tuesday’s Spring General Election on April 6, each hoping to win one of the four available seats on the Merrill Area Public Schools (MAPS) Board of Eduction (BOE). Below are the five candidates:

Dallas Seiwert

Dallas Seiwert, MAPS School Board candidate.

Age: 25
Family: Wife Jessica, Stepdaughter Maycie in 7th grade
Employment/position: UPS – Wausau, Package Delivery Driver
Past or present elected offices held, dates served: None
Membership in religious, service, fraternal, etc., clubs or organizations, and offices held, dates served:
• Lincoln County Teen Court Panel Member from 6th grade through High School
• Merrill Marching Jays Pit Crew 2014
• Assistant Frontline Coach for Marching Jays 2015 and 2016
• High School and Middle School Bowling Club Coach 2019
Why have you chosen to run for the office you seek: “I know my resume doesn’t look like much, but trust me when I say that I’m completely capable of being a member of the school board. I became interested last summer when there was a vacancy on the board, and I’ve never lost the drive to be on the board. The City of Merrill needs someone to make sure their voices are heard, and I’m going to be the one who will listen. I’ve heard countless citizens say they’ve been ignored from members of the current board and no taxpayer should ever struggle to have their ideas or concerns brought forward. I strive for 100% transparency between the board and the city. I will always put in my best effort to improve the education of every single student. I want to bring Merrill to the top amongst the best schools in the state. Our schools should be a focal point that brings citizens to this great city. I am also a huge promoter of mental health and want to ensure that each and every single student has the support they need to succeed. Mental health is a big contributing factor to the success of a student and it must not be overlooked. I am not running for myself. I am running for every parent, student, teacher, and family of Merrill. If our community is not happy, then I won’t be either. I love this town and will always try to make our community the best it can be.”

Brett Woller

Brett Woller, MAPS School Board candidate.

Age: 23
Family: Mother and Father – Jim & Kristin Woller, no children
Employment/position: Owner – Woller Stump Grinding & Excavating LLC
Past or present elected offices held, dates served:
• The first term on the Merrill School Board in 2018 to present, and running for re-election for another term!
Membership in religious, service, fraternal, etc., clubs or organizations, and offices held, dates served:
• Member of Trailmates Snowmobile Club (2004-Present)
• Member of the Samoset Council – Boy Scouts of America Board of Directors (2018-Present) – Currently serving on the Camping Committee, and National Camp Accreditation Program (we review local camps around the area to make sure they are up to the proper standards for the Scouting program and safety).
• Member St. Andrew Lutheran Church – Wausau
Why have you chosen to run for the office you seek: “I’m running for re-election to the Merrill School board for a variety of reasons, however there is one that stands out the most. As an Eagle Scout, we learn the importance of giving back to the community that fostered our growth along the way – I see serving on the School Board as my way to give back to my community and students in our community. I grew up in Merrill, own a business here, and genuinely love this community – that’s why I will always work to ensure that current and future students have as many opportunities possible for their future. Merrill is unique in that we are close enough to larger communities to offer great opportunities for students but small enough to have a very hometown feel. We have so much to offer to families and students, from a wide variety of A.P. classes, unique partnerships with local businesses in the community, a great Fab-Lab and Tech-Ed program at the High School, fantastic music program, sports program, and college credit programs with neighboring colleges just to name a few. If re-elected, I will continue to work hard to put Merrill students and taxpayers first in promoting the best education we can afford while being fiscally responsible for years to come. I’m very proud of the great things we have accomplished in the past few years, but I’m even more excited about the future for our students. We are working hard to establish the best education for all of our students, from elementary education all the way through graduation. Every student, no matter their age or grade, deserves the same opportunity to succeed, and that’s what I’m fighting for. If you put your trust in me for another term on April 6th, I can assure you that I will work my hardest to do what’s best for our students and our community. I’d be more than happy to talk about any issue and welcome community feedback on anything we are working on as a school board. I ask for your support and vote on April 6th!”

Chad Krueger

Chard Krueger, MAPS School Board candidate.

Age: 44
Family: Wife Renee Krueger, two children – Kendall (17) and Charlee (8)
Employment/position: B&D Warehouse – Warehouse Manager
Past or present elected offices held, dates served: None
Membership in religious, services, fraternal, etc., clubs or organizations, and offices held, dates served:
•I have been a member of Merrill Fastpitch since 2011 and have been president from 2013 to current.
• I also have been a member of the Merrill High School Softball Boosters for the past 6 years.
Why have you chosen to run for the office you seek: “I have made the decision to run for the School Board position because I believe I can contribute positively to the school district. I was born in Merrill, attended MAPS myself, and have raised my children in Merrill. Those that know me, would say that I have been passionate about decisions made over the years related to our schools and children’s education. Additionally, I have dedicated a great deal of my time to developing the youth softball program, working directly with youth at all age levels, as well as fundraising to support and help improve the Merrill Softball Program as a whole.”
“It is my hope, that if I am elected to the school board, to promote increased public communication and gain more in person public involvement. I believe this will lead to the public being informed before changes occur and having an impact on the decisions we are making on behalf of our children’s education. By being more involved, this will lead to greater confidence in our school board’s decision making and make MAPS a great school district that will draw in more people. Declining enrollment is an issue that directly impacts our ability to sustain the programs we value within our schools. It is my hope that there can be more coordination and involvement with the City of Merrill and the school district to develop and promote our community, creating a school and city that people want to come to. I also believe that our teacher’s satisfaction results in increased youth performance. We need to create a culture that draws teachers to this area and value and support the current teachers in being leaders of our children’s education. I look forward to this opportunity to serve our community.”

Kendra Osness

Kendra Osness, MAPS School Board candidate.

Age: 38
Family: Spouse – Steve Osness; Children- Payge Osness (4th grader) and Raya Osness (1st grader)
Employment/position: Church Mutual Insurance/Underwriting Support Supervisor
Past or present elected offices held, dates served:
• Merrill Area Public School – Sept 2020 – Present
Membership in religious, service, fraternal, etc., clubs or organizations, and offices held, dates served:
• Kate Goodrich PTO from 2016-2020
• Merrill Ice Reflections board from 2018-2020.
Why have you chosen to run for the office you seek: “I chose to run for office because I care about Merrill. I believe in the school district and the people in it. I am proud to be a part of a great community and have my kids involved in MAPS.”
“If elected, I will be here to listen, make educated decisions based upon the information I have, and always try to do what is best for the district. I would be honored to receive your vote on April 6th.”

Maria Volpe

Maria Volpe, MAPS School Board candidate.

Age: 53
Family: Three children
Employment/position: Senior examiner at Sedgwick Claims Management
Past or present elected offices held, dates served (Please be specific)
• Merrill Area Public Schools Board of Education, currently Vice President. Board member since 2016.
• NTC Board of Trustees: Past Chair, Vice Chair and Secretary Treasurer – 2010 to present.
• Merrill Area United Way Board of Directors. 2016 – 2018.
• Lincoln County Humane Society Board of Directors. Appointed May 2011 for a three-year term.
Membership in religious, service, fraternal, etc., clubs or organizations, and offices held, dates served:
• Den leader for Boy Scout Troop Pack 500, Merrill, Wisconsin, 2008-2012
• Former Merrill Youth Hockey Association Board Member and Youth Soccer coach.
• Junior Achievement volunteer 2019 – present
• St. Francis Xavier Parish School Committee, Merrill, Wisconsin in May 2010, appointed for a five-year term.
Why have you chosen to run for the office you seek: “I believe in being invested in my community through service. My children have been part of this wonderful district for the past 25 years, and I am proud to be part of the Board of Education. I believe in serving to make our community better and better. MAPS has much to be proud of, and I am happy to be a part of that.”

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