Trustee Election | Candidate Bios

Candidate Bios

Trustee Candidate Statement:

I believe in the mission of the WEA Trust. I am proud of the work its employees do.

I work hard to help guide the organization I love in traversing the difficult landscape of the healthcare marketplace. Sometimes that means hewing close to the line set by the executive leadership team as the best path to success and profitability. Other times it means altering that course in response to changes in the market or the performance of the companies. As the Board sets policy for the Trust, we process information the staff provides in advance of each meeting, we tap our individual expertise and judgement, we engage the staff and our colleagues in thorough discourse, and we consider the various impacts of our decisions. My day job as a public school teacher and my time as a local, regional, and state union representative helps me gauge the impact of our decisions on members. It keeps me in contact with educators and public employees across the state and ensures the Trust’s efforts to serve our members never stray far from the mark. This is a fiduciary duty I willingly embrace. This is work that I enjoy. It is also challenging and sometimes difficult work. In the course of the next three years, I am sure we’ll face these challenges and difficulties. With new leadership and a re-energized team, the Trust is poised for success.

The WEA Trust makes a difference: a difference that members feel every time they pick up the phone and call our offices looking for information or guidance. I am eager to be a part of that difference for the next three years.

If elected to serve a term as Trustee by the members of the WEA Trust, I’d continue to refine my skills and I’d put them to use charting a course for our organization’s success in the next three years.

Employer/Occupation:

School District of Shorewood—English/Journalism Teacher

Work Experience:

  • School District of Shorewood—Shorewood, WI (English/ Journalism Teacher)

  • St. Francis School District—Saint Francis, WI (English Teacher)

  • Nicolet High School—Glendale, WI (Teacher)

High School:

Marquette University High School—Milwaukee, WI

Postsecondary Education:

  • University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee (BS in Education)

  • University of Wisconsin—Madison (Courses Only No Degree)

Degrees or Professional Certifications:

  • Certified Journalism Educator (Journalism Education Association)

  • Professional Educator (life license, T001-1300, DPI)

  • Peer Representative (PDP Team Member, Z005, DPI)

  • Bachelor of Science, Education (University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee)

Association Memberships/Offices Held:

  • School District of Shorewood (District Leadership Team)

  • Shorewood Education Association (Executive Board Member, past president, UniServ Representative)

  • Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC) Region #7 (Executive Board Member)

  • WEAC (Member of the Board of Directors)

  • Southeast United Educators (Executive Board Member)

  • North Shore United Educators (Secretary Treasurer, Member of UniServ Board)

Non-profit or Public Board Experience:

  • WEAC Region #7—Brookfield, WI (Executive Board Member)

  • WEAC—Madison, WI (Board Member)

  • Shorewood Education Association—Shorewood, WI (Executive Board Member, President)

  • Southeast United Educators—Brookfield, WI (Executive Board Member)

  • North Shore United Educators—Brookfield, WI (Secretary Treasurer, UniServ Board Member)

Skills and Expertise:

  • I am a long-range strategic thinker. I process detailed and complicated information and apply it to dynamic organizations that navigate complex work environments and redefine themselves in a manner that responds to the challenges in the marketplace. As a fiduciary, I seek to expand my knowledge of the health care industry through formal as well as informal educational opportunities. I do this so that I can determine which policies will best serve our members. I work hard to strike a balance between being involved in the enterprise and allowing the executive team to run the organization they’ve been hired to run.

  • I help the boards on which I serve arrive at consensus while at the same time challenge status quo thinking. With eight years of experience on the board, I know when to question, and when to listen and learn. As a trustee, I find that it is important to establish relationships on the board that allow for respectful disagreement so that the consensus we reach is stronger and reflects the many views present on the board. The role of trustee for this organization is challenging and rewarding, and it is a role in which I take great pride.

Trustee Candidate Statement:

During the time I have been a Trustee, I have served on the Audit and Executive Committee, and as Chair of the Governance and Nominations Committees. I bring to the Board a strong financial and analytical mind, a loyalty to current and past Trust members, an understanding of public employees and their rights, and the desire to serve all of Wisconsin's public employees.

The Trust has faced numerous challenges including political attacks, an ever-changing membership base, decrease in overall membership, and benefit design plan changes. As a public employee, I myself have been faced with these same stressors. I believe that I am strong willed, open minded, energetic, and optimistic that the Trust can become better than ever while offering public employees a quality product that enhances their lives. The many economic and political challenges that the Trust, its members, and all public employees have faced has forced the Trust to reevaluate its operations and the way we do the business of providing insurance benefits to members. I believe that I have and can continue to help, the Trust bridge these tough times and create a new vision for the future. I believe that it is imperative the Trust maintain its quality service and understanding of what members value.

I believe that while the Trust has faced many challenges in the ever-growing field of insurance, the decisions that we face make us challenge the status quo, and will make us a stronger business entity as we learn to adjust to the new (ever-changing) market. By providing excellent customer service, becoming more competitively priced, and developing an education program to help our members become more involved in their own health care, we can not only gain back the membership we lost, but grow and become a vibrant company once again.

In conclusion, I am honored to have worked hard to help the Trust through these rough economic times and wish to continue to serve as a Trustee and help the enterprise become stronger than ever for our members while offering a quality product that they can depend on.

Employer/Occupation:

Burlington Area School District—Math Teacher/RTI and TSID Coordinator

Work Experience:

  • BASD—Burlington, WI (Mathematics Teacher, RTI/MTSS Interventionist, EL Mathematics, Reality Fair, and TSID Coordinator)

  • University of Wisconsin—Parkside—Kenosha, WI(Educational Researcher)

  • Weidner Center for the Performing Arts—Green Bay, WI (Development Assistant/Membership Coordinator)

Postsecondary Education:

  • University of Wisconsin—La Crosse—La Crosse, WI (MA in Education with At-Risk Youth)

  • University of Wisconsin—Green Bay—Green Bay, WI (BS in Mathematics and Secondary Ed)

  • Colorado State University—Pueblo, Colorado (No Degree, Coursework on RTI/MTSS, EL Mathematics, Diversity and Inclusion, and TSID Interventionist)

  • University of St. Thomas—St. Paul, Minnesota (Coursework on Intervention Strategist, Audit Accounting Strategies, Mathematics, and Mathematics Business Applications)

Degrees or Professional Certifications:

  • MA in Education (At-Risk Youth Emphasis)

  • BS in Mathematics and Secondary Education

  • License in 6–12 Mathematics and 6–12 Secondary Education

  • Certification for PDP Team Reviewer and Mentoring

  • Certifications for RTI Intervention Strategist and TSID Coaching

  • Certification for EL Mathematics Interventionist and Coaching

Association Memberships/Offices Held:

  • WEA Insurance Trust (Trustee, Executive Committee At Large and Secretary/Treasurer, Nominating Comm. Chair, Governance Comm. Chair, and Audit Committee Member)

  • International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

  • Wisconsin Education Association Council (Board Member, RA Delegate, PR Committee Chair/Vice Chair, Winter and Summer Academy, Midwest Leadership Conference Attendee, Professional Development Institute Presenter, and Committee Member)

  • WEA Academy (President, Board Member, Vice President, and Treasurer)

  • Burlington Education Association and Southern Lakes United Educators (many offices held)

  • National Education Association (RA Delegate, Constitution and Bylaws Committee Chair, NEA PAC Fund Committee Chair, and Committee Member)

  • America's Health Insurance Plan (AHIP)

Business, Professional, Occupational, or Civic Memberships:

  • Association for Supervision and Curriculum (ASCD)

  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and WI Council of Teachers of Mathematics

  • Matheson Memorial Library Friends of the Library (Vice President, Board Member, Fundraiser, and Committee Chair)

  • Alzheimer's Association

  • ACE (Architecture, Construction and Engineering) Academy (Co-op with AGC of Wisconsin)

  • Who's Who Among America's Educators, Phi Kappa Phi, and Phi Delta Kappa

Non-profit or Public Board Experience:

  • Cross Lutheran Church—Burlington, WI (Worship and Music Leadership Board Member)

  • WEA Academy Board—Madison, WI (President, Vice President, and Treasurer)

  • WEA Trust Health Insurance Board—Madison, WI (Board Member, Secretary/Treasurer, Governance Chair, and Executive Team At Large)

Skills and Expertise:

  • Audit/financial/mathematical background and education

  • Governance and Board experience on several other boards

  • Ability to ask difficult and in-depth questions

  • Decision maker and initiator while operating with honesty and integrity

  • Organizer and planner, leadership and mentorship of others

  • Understanding of successes and challenges faced by public employees

  • Dedicated, committed, and public service is a priority

  • Collaborator, problem solver, and critical thinker

  • Good communication skills and attention to detail

  • Cultural awareness of the diversity of our membership