Kettering school board chooses new school board member

The list of candidates to fill a vacant seat on the Kettering City School District Board of Education has been narrowed to one, a district official said this morning. FILE

Credit: FILE

Credit: FILE

Official appointment to come at Oct. 20 school board meeting.

KETTERING — The search to fill the vacancy on the Kettering City School District Board of Education appears to have ended.

The board has “an intent to appoint” Mark J. Martin, an executive director with the Community Tissue Services in Kettering, to succeed longtime board member Julie Gilmore, district Treasurer Dan Schall said Tuesday.

Mark Martin is the top choice to fill the vacant Kettering City School District board of education seat. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

Credit: CONTRIBUTED

The appointment of Martin is set to be voted on by the board Oct. 20, Schall said.

A University of Dayton graduate, Martin, 43, said he has lived in Kettering since 2000, and has volunteered nearly as long as a mentor or coach, including at Fairmont High School.

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“I have a great relationship with many in the community,” Martin said. "I’m an avid listener. I’m an agent of change (and) I am adept at handling challenging, difficult situations.

“I feel like I bring a well-thought out mindset into what’s going on in this community and the challenges facing Kettering,” he added.

Martin was the only candidate to meet with the board three times, the last being on Friday, Schall said.

Three others – Diane Farrell, state Sen. Peggy Lehner and Chrissie Richards – were also called back by the board for a second interview last week after it met with all 22 applicants for the seat that became vacant Oct. 1, Schall said.

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“I know that (the board) said many times over they had a lot of very strong people,” Schall said. “There were a lot of really good candidates.”

Farrell has been director of external relations and development for the Dayton Metro Public Library since 2013, district records show.

Lehner represents the Ohio Senate’s 6th District, which includes Kettering, Huber Heights, Riverside, Centerville, Miamisburg, Miami Twp., Washington Twp., West Carrollton, Oakwood, Germantown and part of Dayton.

Her seat is term limited and expires in a few months.

Richards has been a network director at Kettering Health Network since 2010, records show.

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Martin has been with the tissue center for 14 years, having worked as an executive director since 2016 after serving as a coordinator and supervisor, records show.

Prior to that he worked at Delphi Automotive for seven years as a quality operator/coordinator. Martin earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from UD and a master’s degree in business/healthcare administration from Strayer University, district records show.

He and his wife, Jennifer, have raised two sons, both Fairmont graduates.

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Upon approval by the board, Martin will fill the seat Gilmore occupied for 23 years. She was elected in 1997 after retiring from a 31-year career teaching Kettering junior high and middle school students.

The term for the seat is set to expire at the end of 2021, according to the Montgomery County Board of Elections. Kettering board members are paid $125 per meeting, Schall said.

While no documentation could be obtained by the Dayton Daily News Tuesday, the Kettering board has not had a black board member in more than three decades, if ever, said Director of Business Services Ken Lackey, who has been with the district for 31 years.

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