The Bend La Pine Schools Board has narrowed their search for a new board member. Wells Ashby's seat became vacant when he was elected Deschutes County Circuit Court Judge. Board Chair Peggy Kinkade says they had a variety of applicants: "We took applicants over the course of a few weeks. We had five applicants for the position. This past Tuesday night the full School Board in a full public session interviewed all five of the candidates and took a vote to narrow the list to two finalists. Those two finalists are Mike Hotzclaw and Cheri Helt." Kinkade says next Tuesday, the Board will decide who will fill Ashby's Zone 1 seat. She adds that they hope the candidate will then run in the May election to complete Ashby’s term. Mike Holtzclaw is a Dean at COCC. Cheri Helt is a co-owner of Zydeco Restaurant and is on the Board for the Education Foundation for the Bend La Pine Schools.