Long-time Board Members

ISD 199 Says Farewell to Two Long-time Board Members
Posted on 12/17/2021
Cindy Nordstrom and Lynette StensgardThe terms of two long-time ISD 199 School Board members will expire this year after more than a decade of service. Lynette Stensgard, a board member of 16 years, and Cindy Nordstrom, a board member of 12 years, decided not to run for re-election this November. The two leave a legacy of advocacy and leadership in their wake as they step away from their roles on the board.

Director Nordstrom ran for the school board after helping the district renew its existing operating levy in 2008.

“Working to get a positive message out about education during the levy inspired me to work toward better communication as a board member while bringing my own experience as a teacher to the board room,” she said.

Director Stensgard decided to run for school board after volunteering at her children’s schools and acting as a community liaison in getting approval for the new middle school building project.

“When the bond passed, I wanted to continue my involvement with that effort as well as being an overall advocate for kids,” she said. “The education system truly needs people to advocate for our kids, and I felt called to do so.”

Director Stensgard admitted that she didn’t expect to be on the school board this long, but the work and the people kept her coming back.

“There was always a need and a new goal to chase, and I’ve met and learned from so many wonderful staff and students during my time on the school board,” she said. “I have loved being a part of facilities projects and collaborating with teams of people to bring in new programs and technology.”

Director Nordstrom said her favorite memories on the board include providing free all-day kindergarten before it was fully funded by the state, hiring new district leadership, and seeing voters pass the bond that upgraded district facilities and built Simley High School's performing arts center, stadium, and track.

The work and accomplishments of the two long-time board members have inspired their newer colleagues as well.

“Cindy and Lynette instilled in me the importance of explaining not just what we are doing as a school board, but why we are doing it,” ISD 199 School Board Chair Matt Schaefer said. “Taking time to explain why the board is doing something typically helps people understand what we are doing as well.”

ISD 199 School Board Vice Chair and Treasurer Sherry Warrick said, “Cindy and Lynette are sincere advocates of our ISD 199 students, staff, and community. I’ve further improved my leadership skills by watching how they get involved and listening to the comments they make and the questions they ask during meetings.”

ISD 199 School Board Member Mary Frances Clardy said the two school board members mentored her when she joined the school board in 2020. “They’re so approachable, and they always took extra time to explain the history and reasoning behind the board’s past decisions,” she said. “They really laid the groundwork for the culture and accomplishments of the current school board.”

When directors Nordstrom and Stensgard were asked about the hopes they have for the future of the ISD 199 School Board, Director Nordstrom said, “I hope that they continue to believe in and advocate for public education. One of the greatest strengths of public education is the opportunity to educate ALL students.”

Director Stensgard said, “Our goal has been to make decisions based on what’s best for kids. The passion and creativity that is put into that goal is amazing. Don’t lose that!”

Both board members expressed their gratitude for the chance to serve the district and for the support of the school community and ISD 199 residents.

“I’m so proud of all we’ve accomplished together over the years,” Director Stensgard said. “Thank you to Dave Bernhardson, my fellow school board members, and the ISD 199 staff, students, and community for your support during my time with the board!”

Director Nordstrom added, “The mission ‘Inspire. Innovate. Excel. A Community Commitment’ is truly representative of ISD 199. Staff, students, families, and community members have the gifts and talents to support and encourage one another every single day. Thank you for allowing me to serve this community for 12 years as a school board member.”

Newly elected school board members Sarah Larsen and Charlie Thompson will take over for directors Nordstrom and Stensgard in January. Thank you to our two long-time school board members for their tireless dedication to advocating for every ISD 199 student.