A little more than a week after asking for more candidates to consider for the city’s fledgling school board, Mayor Kenney has a new list of names.
The nominating panel Friday officially delivered the names of 18 additional prospects to the mayor at a public meeting in City Hall. That brings to 45 the pool from which Kenney will choose nine people to run the Philadelphia school district, with its 130,000 students and $3 billion budget, once the School Reform Commission ceases to exist on June 30.
The new list consists of: Dawn Ang, Catherine Blunt, Jenny Bogoni, Alison Cohen, Deborah Diamond, Supreme Dow, Cheryl Harper, Will Jordan, Reed Lyons, William Peebles, Anna Perng, Brenda Rivera, Michael Smith, Andrew Stober, Katherine Stratos, Fernando Trevino, Wayne Walker and Christina Wong.
Kenney last week said he wanted a broader pool of candidates as he chooses his school board.
“As we review the overall makeup of the appointments, it is important that the members represent all Philadelphians,” the mayor wrote in a letter to the nominating panel, chaired by Wendell Pritchett, a former School Reform Commission member and the University of Pennsylvania provost.
Pritchett said he felt the additional nominees satisfied Kenney’s call for more candidates who were parents and educators. “That was our additional focus, in addition to a diverse group of backgrounds in general to bring to the board,” Pritchett told reporters after Friday’s meeting.
“We went back and looked at the whole list of people that we interviewed,” Pritchett said. “But the reality is that most of the people that we put forward this time are people that we had already discussed and been excited about.”
About 500 people were considered for seats on the board — candidates could put their own names forward or be nominated by someone else. The nominating panel interviewed about 80 prospects.
Kenney now has 20 days to make his final selections. Those who make the short list will meet with the mayor before he announces the appointments.
Board members, once named, won’t get paid but will begin their work right away. The school district’s budget season is about to kick off, and new board members would be expected to attend School Reform Commission meetings and board trainings. They will begin running the school system on July 1.