Meet the Candidates for School Board
Four candidates are running to fill two open seats on the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education. The incumbents are Garry Lenhart and Kristin Swift. The challengers are Cally Edelen and Grant Pinkley. Voting will take place on November 2, 2021.
- The public is invited to attend a candidate forum hosted by the Bondurant-Farrar Education Association on Thursday, October 21 at 6:00 p.m.
- The event will take place at the Bondurant-Farrar High School (Library) located at 1000 Grant Street N in Bondurant.
- Enter at the main entrance, located on the south side of the building, near the flagpole.
- The moderator will prepare and ask questions on behalf of the association.
To help community members get to know each candidate, profiles have been assembled for each individual. The candidates' own statements are listed below, they have been minimally edited. Each bio is designed to give voters a better idea of the candidate, therefore this page is long (just keep scrolling) and we encourage you to read through each one. Profiles appear in alphabetical order.
Background Information: My husband, Mike, and I have lived in the Bondurant-Farrar Community School District for almost 4 years. We moved to Bondurant, from a larger suburb, seeking that small town rural school with high morals and values. We also wanted a strong academic focus for our children.
I earned a BA in Elementary Education from Buena Vista University and an MS in Reading from Nova Southeastern University. I am currently in my 22nd year of being an educator. I have worked with kids outside of education as a youth group leader, mentor and coach coaching many junior high and high school sports.
District or School Involvement: As both of my kids are now school age, more of my time will be able to be devoted to serving on committees and groups. I am currently reviewing curriculum to ensure that our children are receiving age-appropriate curriculum. I am also working to ensure that parent's and community voices are heard and represented in all decisions that are made by our district.
Personal or Professional Accomplishments: My greatest personal accomplishment will be becoming a mom. A mom who will raise strong men who have high ethical morals and values who contribute positively to their community and those around them. Children who understand respect but also know they can respectfully use their voice to stand for their high morals and values. Children who develop critical thinking skills to question and search for answers.
As an educator I have served on many leadership committees that are responsible for making educational decisions.
What motivates you to serve on the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education? I am a passionate and engaged working mom that wants to bring a new voice to the district and have a positive impact on our students, staff, and community. I will work to restore values and structures based upon the communities views and needs. I am not only running for my children and their generation but for many generations to come. Our children are our future, and we must do all we can to provide opportunities for them to thrive! I believe in leaving a legacy of faith, empowerment, and helping all to reach their full potential and to know that they were created for a unique purpose to be all that they were created to be!
With 22 years of educational experience and two young children in the Bondurant-Farrar Community School District, it is my hope to offer transparency, authenticity and honesty while being a voice for students, staff, and those who elected me to be their voice. As a member of the Bondurant-Farrar School Board, my focus will be on the following:
- Advocate for Children and Staff. An advocate for children and affirm age appropriate curriculum
- Voice for Parents and Staff by proactively connecting with them to hear their concerns and representing them at school board meetings, as well as ensuring educational experience doesn't infringe on parental rights.
- Keep Focus on Educational basics that will help students develop the skills needed for critical thinking.
Background Information: I’ve been a resident of Bondurant-Farrar for over 30 years. The last eight I’ve lived here with my family. I moved to Bondurant when I was seven and lived here until I was 26. I was an educator in the Des Moines Public School District for seven years. I come from a family of educators including both my mother and father having taught in the BF district for 30+ years and 25+ years, respectively. I have six daughters, five of which are students in the Bondurant-Farrar district currently.
I have a deeply rooted love of our community and the Bondurant-Farrar Community School District with a vested interest in its success. I’ve greatly enjoyed a successful past four years on the BFCSD school board serving as Vice President and President the last two years. We’ve been a greatly productive board and it is my desire to continue the work we’ve been doing.
District or School Involvement: Bondurant-Farrar School Board, Anderson Elementary Watch DOGS participant, Bondurant-Farrar Athletic Boosters member, Bondurant-Farrar Fine Arts Boosters member
Personal or Professional Accomplishments: Bondurant-Farrar graduate 1991, Central College Graduate 1995, BF Coach (junior high boys basketball), Foster/Adoptive parent since 2015, Assistant Vice President Wells Fargo 2013-2019, Vice President Wells Fargo 2019-currently
What motivates you to serve on the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education? I am motivated by my love of our community as a 30+ year resident. I am motivated by my experiences as a Bondurant-Farrar student and proud graduate and my desire to impact the experiences of my five daughters currently attending Bondurant—Farrar. Finally, I am motivated by my deep love of children and I greatly desire to be a positive force in their lives.
Background Information: My family has had a long history living in the City of Bondurant. It goes back to 1926, the year my great grandpa, Virgil Friedrickson graduated from Bondurant and then later served on Bondurant's School Board. In 1955, my grandpa, Ron Friedrickson graduated from Bondurant and my mother, Dana (Friedrickson) Pinkley graduated in 1980. I graduated from Bondurant-Farrar in 2007 and now my kids are in this school system. It has been enjoyable to hear what Bondurant was like over 100 years ago and to witness the growth the community has gone through.
District or School Involvement: Being involved in my kids activities and coaching multiple sports teams. We have a couple small family business', Pinkley's Boxcar BBQ and Pinkey's Red Roof Christmas Trees. We are also actively involved in our local church.
Personal or Professional Accomplishments: Graduating with my Bachelors Degree from Grand View University. Competing in multiple sports in college. Having the privilege to be a father and raise my family.
What motivates you to serve on the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education? Three things motivate me to serve on the Bondurant-Farrar Board:
- Invested - I went to school at Bondurant-Farrar and I love this community and the families that make up this great town! This is why my beautiful wife, Allison and I chose to make Bondurant our home and future for our four children; Lanie, Grady, Saylie, and Vander.
- Families First - This is the heart beat as to why I'm running; our families in this district. I love people and the connection we can have with each other. If someone on the school board isn't in tune with what our families are thinking, that is a serious problem. I plan to be the voice of this community and for You!
- Growth - We all know our community is rapidly growing, and that requires us to have an eye on the future. With my construction and developmental background. I plan to use that knowledge to make strong and wise building decisions for our schools.
Background Information: My husband and I have been residents of Bondurant since 1995. We’ve raised three children and hosted ten foreign exchange students from nine countries during the course of those 26 years. All attended Bondurant-Farrar Community School District. After graduating in 2014, my daughter attended Iowa State University and is currently an Industrial Engineer working in North Carolina. After graduating in 2016, my middle son attended Iowa State University and is an Industrial Engineer working in Ankeny. My youngest son is a senior at Bondurant-Farrar High School.
I graduated from Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. After graduating from college, I worked in various roles for MidAmerican Energy for ten years before deciding to shift my energy to the non-profit world. Additionally, while working at MidAmerican Energy, I earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Drake University.
District or School Involvement: I’ve been an active volunteer in the Bondurant community for 20 plus years. Before my kids were in school, I volunteered at our church to tutor struggling Bondurant-Farrar students. When my children became school age, I shifted my focus to volunteering in their classrooms at Anderson Elementary (pre-Morris days), and even recruited my mother, a teacher herself, to help fill in for me when I was out of town. During those years, I was a longtime member of the B-F PTO, helping to raise money through various fundraising activities, and also served as president and treasurer for 5 years where I helped the organization gain its tax-exempt non-profit status.
I’ve been the treasurer for the Bondurant-Farrar Education Foundation since its inception in 2009. As a tool to help raise significant dollars, for our then struggling district, the Education Foundation started the annual Party of Blue Jays fundraiser. During its 9 years, the Party of Blue Jays raised over a million dollars to give back to the school district, and I served as the Foundation representative, financial person, and co-coordinator for the event.
With a natural aptitude for and enjoyment of math, budgets, and money management, I’ve also been treasurer for the Bondurant-Farrar Athletic Boosters since 2015 and assisted with fundraisers and concessions when needed. Since 2011, I’ve been an active member of the B-F Fine Arts Boosters where I previously served as president, and currently serve as treasurer. I’ve also served as the speech and drama representative and in the pit crew.
And finally, for the past twelve years I’ve been a member of the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education where I’ve served on each of the sub-committees: finance, wellness, negotiation, student achievement, and infrastructure. I’ve also served on special policy and administration hiring committees.
Personal or Professional Accomplishments: Along with my school volunteer roles, I also volunteer in the community. I was the treasurer for the Bondurant Soccer Club for twelve years and served as treasurer for our church for over five. I’m the chair for Iowa for American Field Services (AFS), an organization that helps bring foreign exchange students from across the globe to Iowa and the rest of the United States to local high schools.
In 2013, I was deeply honored to be named Bondurant Citizen of the year and Volunteer of the Year for Modern Woodman of America in 2014.
Prior to the last Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) legislative extension vote, I was asked to serve on the Iowa School Board Association committee to help explain the need to continue SAVE to legislatures. This local one cent additional tax was critical for the health of the BFCSD as it enabled us to build Morris Elementary without raising taxes on district residents. At the time, our district had very little industry thus pushing the tax burden, almost entirely, onto the residents. On this committee, I was able to share our story.
What motivates you to serve on the Bondurant-Farrar Board of Education? The school board sets the vision and goals for our district, and holds it accountable for results. One school board member cannot do the job alone. With children as the ultimate focus, school board members work together as a team, each contributing their unique talents and experience to accomplish the board’s goals.
Much of my life the last twenty years has been volunteering for the growing Bondurant community and school district, work I’ve deeply valued. When I first joined the board 12 years ago, our district was in financial trouble. But through dedication, collaboration, and careful fiscal planning by board members and administration, this thankfully is no longer the case. But school finances remain a complex, slippery slope and can take years of board experience to fully grasp all the moving parts. And with continued district growth and ensuing construction, the level of complexity intensifies. Board experience is beneficial in being able to make sound financial decisions for the district. As such, I want to continue to help influence the fiscal health of the district and make informed decisions where voter taxpayer money is spent.
Serving in a multitude of volunteer roles puts me in a unique position to help create stronger ties between the school board and other stakeholders. And it’s through this unique position that I want to continue to preserve what works and push for additional improvements in the quality of our schools. I believe in first-class public education, in and out of the classroom for both current and future students, and it’s this passion that motivates me to continue serving on the board.