Pepper wins another term, Holland takes open spot on Park Hill board

The only incumbent in the running for the Park Hill School District Board of Education cruised to victory in the Tuesday, April 7 general municipal election. Matt Pepper

Matt Pepper won a second term to the board with more than 30 percent of the vote (2,260 votes), while newcomer Karen Holland was also elected, garnering 26 percent (1910 votes).

Holland takes the spot of Allison Wurst, who did not seek re-election.

Pepper, 28, a fairly recent product of the Park Hill School District, ran on a platform of balancing programming demands, financial concerns and growth. To address those needs, he said the board needs to effectively discuss difficult decisions and hopes to have increased dialogue with employees and the public about district finances and to help the board of education to be more effective leaders both inside and outside of the board room.

“The experience and knowledge I have gained as a board member the past two years is valuable in terms of understanding district processes and practices, which will give me better perspective of how the board can be more effective in making good decisions,” he said prior to the election.

Karen Holland

Holland, 37, works as both a firefighter and a police officer and campaigned on her experience in law enforcement and the importance of school safety.

“My primary concern will always be what is best for the education, safety and well-being of the children and our community,” she said, adding that population control and safety concerns are a primary challenge for the district as schools are essentially small self-contained communities.

Lathem Scott (1,604 votes) and Jeff Kingsley (1,534 votes) were unsuccessful in their bids to win a spot. Scott also came up short in the election last spring for a board slot.