BEND, OR -- Two Bend natives are vying for a seat on the Bend-La Pine School Board. Carrie Douglass was appointed to the board when Nori Juba stepped down in March. She's seeking her first full term, running against local financial advisor Troy Reinhart and investment manager Ricardo Olegario.
Douglass tells KBND News, "In this race, our community really has a chance to elect someone who is really uniquely qualified to be on the school board, and not just wanting to be a public servant." She adds, "I bring both deep education and business experience. And, my education experience is both at the school level, as a teacher and school administrator, and at the district level, as the head of HR."
Troy Reinhart was also born and raised in Bend. He believes his business experience is needed on the board. "They aren't asking the tough questions; and that really came to light with the Kenwood School gym collapse. I would submit to you that only by the grace of God did we not kill students and teachers. And if we had, God forbid, we would be having a much different discussion, right now." He says the district needs to take a hard look at spending. "The question is why does it cost $130 million to build a new high school, when the last one cost $65 million just 17 years ago. That's huge inflation, and somebody needs to look it. They want somebody running that's going to ask those kinds of questions."
The third candidate, Rick Olegario, moved to Bend from California a couple of years ago. He currently serves on the Bend-La Pine Schools Budget Committee.
Tuesday is the last day to mail ballots in time for the May 16 election.