School board race shaping up

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— Next year, the five-member Hayden School Board will consist of two new members with one already determined.

Incumbent Kurt Frentress, 3rd District, will retain his seat on the board. Frentress is not being challenged in the Nov. 4 election.

Frentress will be joined on the board for the next four years by Patty Bruchez, who is not being challenged in the 1st District.

Bruchez will replace current School Board President Kathy Hockin, who decided against running for a third term.

Who will replace current School Board Vice President Kelly Hayes will be decided in the upcoming election. Hays is not seeking another term in the 5th District.

Four candidates have emerged to replace Hayes: Melvin Richardson, Kathy Hockett, Brian Hoza and Andrea Hayden.

Each of the six candidates filed their nomination petitions before last Friday. Each candidate secured at least 25 signatures from registered voters in town.

"We have checked all the signatures and the petitions are valid," said Jnl Linsacum, the district's designated election official.

Because no one came forward to challenge Frentress or Bruchez, they will be elected to the board, she said.

However, residents in the 5th District will decide who represents their district for the next four years.

The candidates vying for the seat all have different backgrounds.

Richardson, 38, is a maintenance supervisor at Yampa Valley Regional Airport. He has lived in Hayden since 1981 and has been married to his wife, Elsie, for the past 16 years. The couple has two boys, ages 14 and 11.

Richardson is a board member for The Haven and the cemetery district.

"I like to stay involved in the community," Richardson said. "My boys are going to be entering high school, so I decided to go for it when the seat became open."

Richardson said his roots in the community and his involvement with The Haven and the cemetery district would help if he is elected to the board.

"I'm a fair man," he said. "I have a great amount of experience in the community, and I think the school could use me."

Hockett, 31, has lived in Hayden for the past 10 years but is originally from Craig.

She has been married to her husband, Ron, since 1992. The couple has two children, ages 6 and 3. Hockett, who has earned a bachelor's degree in elementary education, is a homemaker and works part time as a substitute teacher.

"I would really like to contribute to my community," Hockett said. "I thought it would be good to contribute to the community in something I am interested in."

Hoza, 42, is the newcomer of the bunch. He and his wife, Michelle, of 12 years have lived in Hayden for the past two years. The couple has five children, ages 11, 10, 8, 5 and 7 months.

Hoza may be new to the community but has lived in the Yampa Valley for many years. Hoza is the assistant campus dean for Colorado Mountain College. He has been at the college for the past 11 years.

"I have been looking for an opportunity to get involved in the community," Hoza said. "Because of my interest and commitment to education, I felt this was the right opportunity to contribute to the community and the school district."

Hayden, 47, has lived in town for the past five years.

She and her husband, Bill, have been married for four years and do not have children.

Together they own and operate the Hayden Mercantile, 950 Jefferson Ave.

"I feel children's education is of the highest priority," Hayden said. "If there is a way for me to contribute to the success of our children, I want to do that."

The candidates who emerge from the November election will join Troy Wertenberger and Jody Camilletti on the board. These board members were elected in 1999.

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