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Incumbent Brogan and Newcomer Krauss Claim Victory; Goodman Gracious in School Board Defeat

Krauss will serve her first term while Brogan will sit down for a sixth time.

The Ridgewood Board of Education race proved an interesting study of old versus new after voters chose to bring back but also shook things up with some new blood in electing . The pair will serve for the next three years.

Although said she was disappointed with the result of the elections, she was gracious in her defeat. "I congratulate Christina," she said shortly after the results, in which Krauss was determined the highest vote-getter.

"She has her work cut out for her and I thank her for stepping up and coming into this. I'm sure she'll do a great job," Goodman said. The incumbent and tech-savvy social media maven was elected in 2008 along with Brogan but lost to Krauss by about 200 votes this time around.

A member of the Fields Committee, Goodman had taken heat from members of the community who were upset with the process that led to the controversial turfing of district fields in a flood zone and subsequent lighting project.

But Goodman, who had a locally popular education blog and said she'd like to improve technology in the schools and communication on the board, said just because she's no longer making the Monday night trek to the Education Center doesn't mean she's going dark.

"I'm not leaving town," she said. "I'm sure there will be something to blog about."

Goodman thanked Sheila and the rest of the board of education for "three great years" and said she was relieved the budget passed though she did not.

Her replacement said her "world has changed" since announcing her candidacy a few months ago.

"I'm unbelievably gratified by the support and the enthusiasm of my friends, neighbors, fellow citizens and taxpayers," Krauss said with her husband and her daughter by her side.

"The experience has been absolutely fantastic for me. I said win or lose I'm better for the experience but I certainly am happy it turned out this way," she remarked as she shook hands with administrators, village officials and fellow board members.

Krauss ran on a platform of improving the lines of communication between the board of education and the greater community, as well as being the only member representing the K-8 schools, which she said was lacking representation on the five-person school board.

A schools volunteer and former business owner, Krauss also picked up a big endorsement from grassroots group Concerned Residents of Ridgewood, which has opposed the Valley Hospital "Renewal" expansion project. The group has yet to lose a village election though this is its first foray into school elections.

"I look forward to serving my community enthusiastically and with an open mind," Krauss said before heading out to celebrate with family and friends.

Sheila Brogan, who has served as a board member since 1996, said she too was "thrilled" voters reelected her to another term.

Brogan has long maintained there is no better volunteering opportunity in the village, and has said her experience and knowledge of education and legal issues is a strength to the Ridgewood Public Schools.

"It's an honor and I look forward to working hard and fulfilling what I said [in her campaign], which is student achievement, creating opportunities for students and making sure they are safe and their well-being is taken care of," Brogan said. She also expressed how pleased she was the school budget passed.

Perhaps the most controversial point of the election is the candidacy of Gerry Clark, on April 5 but was still left on the ballot because he did not drop out within the required time-frame.

Clark amassed 510 votes, though it's unclear if that would have tipped the scales in favor of Goodman. Clark said when he dropped out that he reevaluated the time he could commit to the board of education. He was known as a strong opponent of the fields and lights projects.

The final tally, with 21.3 percent voter turnout, is:

  • Gerald Clark: 510
  • Christina Krauss: 1,720
  • Laurie Goodman: 1,518
  • Sheila Brogan: 1,657
The Fly April 28, 2011 at 04:22 AM
Let this be a lesson to Councilwoman Bernadette Walsh; serving on the Fields Committee in Ridgewood is now the kiss of death from a political standpoint. Get off of that committee prior to the next Council election Bernie. Ask Tom Riche to take your place; get it?
Bernadette Walsh April 28, 2011 at 12:23 PM
The Fly is looking out for me?! Don't necessarily agree with your prediction. As a lifelong athlete, Junior Olympian, College Varsity Cross Country Runner, Equestrian, Coach and newly minted NJSIAA Track officicial, I think I'm exactly where I belong. Contrary to the Mayor's stand.....I will talk to a Fly : )
The Fly April 28, 2011 at 01:27 PM
Looking forward to our conversation, and to the 2014 election so we can see whose prediction is correct.

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