Hen Hud Board Candidates Interviewed In Public

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From left, Carol Popolow-Abraham sits next to Dr. Toni Salvatore, two candidates being considered to fill a seat that will soon be vacated on the Hendrick Hudson School Board.
From left, Carol Popolow-Abraham sits next to Dr. Toni Salvatore, two candidates being considered to fill a seat that will soon be vacated on the Hendrick Hudson School Board. Photo Credit: Jessica Glenza

This story has been updated.

MONTROSE, N.Y. – The Hendrick Hudson School Board introduced to the public three candidates on Wednesday for a soon-to-be vacated seat on the board. The district presented the candidates publicly after privately interviewing each candidate individually for the elective office earlier this week.

"These interviews should be public," said board President Marion Walsh, "even though there is some uncertainty," she added about case law regarding the topic. The agenda was amended about 24 hours before the meeting to include the interviews.

A special election will not be held for the seat on the board for "many reasons, one of which is cost," Walsh said.

The board is considering four candidates to be appointed to the seat currently held by William Oricchio. He will effectively retire from his position on the board June 30, he was given a clock at Wednesday's board meeting to recognize his years of service.

Oricchio has served on the board since 2006. The candidate selected would serve the remainder of Oricchio's term, about one year. The candidate would then have to run for reelection if he or she chose to continue serving on the board. Terms are three years.

Dr. Carol Popolow-Abraham, Dr. Toni Salvatore, Joanna Harbolic and David White are the four candidates vying for the position. One candidate, Harbolic, was not at the meeting. A fifth candidate has dropped out of the running. 

Popolow-Abraham is a veterinarian at the Croton Animal Hospital, she said she is interested in the position to solve problems and serve the community. She said she has served on the PTA, SEPTA, Westchester-Putnam Chapter of Advocacy for Gifted and Talented Education (AGATE) and has also served on strategic planning committees.

She said she would like to gauge the "pulse of the community a little better, so we know the community's vision for the school, not just the parents."

Salvatore said she has worked in pediatrics for 25 years, although declined to comment on where she practices. "I think there has been a tremendous effort on the part of communicating with the parents." She added, "the issue with the bond … I think we could have done a little better with that."

White served on the Hendrick Hudson School Board from 2004 to 2007 and chose not to run for reelection at the end of his term. White worked as a corporate survey researcher for 25 years and assisted the district in the creation of the "Community Survey" after the failure of the "Implementing the Vision" bond. He currently works at Macy's.

"Recruiting another top-notch academic leader as our superintendent" is an upcoming challenge for the district, he said.  He added that the various financial outcomes of Indian Point Nuclear Power Plants' relicensing hearings would require extensive planning by the district.

Walsh said the board would likely choose its appointee at the next public meeting, scheduled for July 11 at 7:30 p.m.

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