BY MAIRE O’NEILL
The Los Alamos Public Schools Board has received three letters of interest for the District 5 board member position vacancy created by the recent resignation of Dawn Jalbert. Those interested are Erin Green, Pierce Jones and Nikole Aguilar Garcia.
LAPS has slated a forum for 7 p.m. July 19. Details above.
Erin Green states in her letter that she has two children that she has home-schooled for the past six years.
“I understand that it may seem unconventional to have a homeschooling parent on the school board. I assure you I care deeply about the Los Alamos Public Schools. I have been a Girl Scout leader for the last six years as well and many of my scouts attend LAPS. I have many close friends whose kids attend LAPS. I have been a religious education teacher for the past seven years and many of the kids in my classes also attend LAPS,” Green said.
She explained that she feels community connections are strengthened when diverse people work together and that adding a voice to the school board that reflects the home-school voice can help strengthen the community ties in Los Alamos.
“I am also a biracial Latinx/indigenous individual and I feel that I can bring a unique perspective to the diverse needs of this community. I am currently studying counseling and will be a licensed mental health professional in the fall of 2022. This background allows me to listen with an open mind and help validate diverse opinions,” Green said. “I feel that I will be a benefit to the school board and bring a diverse perspective that will reflect the unique needs of this community. Thank you for considering my application.
Green’s resume states that she is a full-time licensed mental health counselor with a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Art History. Her job history includes working as an outdoor adventure guide/online communications coordinator for Strong in Nature, office manager for CM Arbor Care, and director of Los Alamos Forest School.
Pierce Jones write that he has a great desire to serve the community in ensuring that the schools continue to strive for the high standards that the community appreciates.
“I have a passion to serve my community to ensure that all citizens are treated with respect and equality especially when it comes to education,” he said.
He noted that he has more than 10 years of experience in being part of the education community, serving schools, state education committees, local outreach committees and many other initiatives that support teachers and students in continuing a positive trajectory of educational needs that students need.
“My educational background focuses on organizational leadership and the belief that leadership is about serving others and putting their needs before yours,” Pierce said.
Pierce’s resume notes that he has a Doctorate in Organization Leadership, a Master of Arts in Public Policy and a Bachelor of Arts in Management of Informational Systems. He is currently vice president
The third applicant, Nickole Aguilar Garcia is a Los Alamos native and alumna of LAPS, having attended Barranca Mesa Elementary School, Los Alamos Middle School and Los Alamos High School. Her letter states that she believes her background and her commitment to quality education make her and excellent candidate.
Aguilar Garcia holds Bachelor’s degrees in Psychology, Human Resources, and Organizational Leadership and Development from the University of New Mexico as well as a Master’s of Business Administration from New Mexico State University. She currently works as a staff operations manager/chief of Staff for Los Alamos National Laboratory and previously was the branch manager for Del Norte Credit Union serving the Los Alamos and White Rock branches.
Aguilar is married and has four children who attend LAPS going into kindergarten, 2nd, 6th and 12th grade this coming school year.
“I am very excited at the opportunity to serve as a LAPS school board member. Being a Los Alamos native, after I left to go to college, I found myself wanting to return to Los Alamos to raise my children not just because of the amazing community here but because of the schools. Having my children attend the same school system I grew up with is a blessing,” she said.
Aguilar Garcia said she is passionate about quality education and that the community is very fortunate that it has a continuously high-performing school district.
“Our teaching staff and administration are exceptional. The community is avidly supportive of the schools, which is so valuable. As a parent and community member I understand how important it is to support your local schools and serving on the board would be another way I can give back,” she said. “I feel that my education and background in business and customer service gives me an excellent foundation for service on this board. Additionally, the fact that I have children attending Mountain Elementary and LAHS gives me a vested interest and roots in supporting our school system and community.”