District 2 County Council
MICHAEL LEE, Republican
I believe in accountability, fiscal prudence and setting proper goals for our county without self-serving interests or political grandstanding. My main goal is helping Baltimore County be the most desirable county in Maryland to live and work. I already have a job I love, so I’m not a career politician and have no plans to be one. I’m pledging 50% of my Council compensation will go directly to benefit Baltimore County foreign language scholarships.
We live in an amazing diverse county, with access to major East coast cities and international locations, but we need a different and stronger voice to help our schools be the best, our streets to be safest and our quality of life to be unparalleled. Doing the same thing we’ve been doing, electing the same “officials” and “people” isn’t going to get that done.
About Mike Lee:
- I moved in 2011 to Pikesville, MD with my wife. We have two children, with another due in June 2018.
- I co-own the company I work for, and we have no business with Balitmore City, County or the State of Maryland.
- I have never run for any office, nor was appointed to any office.
- I was raised Methodist, have attended Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist, Catholic, Baptist and Unitarian religious ceremonies, and while I do believe in a God, I don’t currently claim any church as my place of worship.
Maybe like most of us, time is “quickly moving.” I have spent my time these past few years, happily raising my children, swimming, learning Korean and working on my house. I happily don’t consider work “work” and consider myself “doggedly persistent” in my approach to any project or work.
I’m running for this position because I believe my children, all the children of Baltimore County and all the people of Baltimore County deserve the absolute best education and quality of life of any county in Maryland. My unique qualifications (successful small business owner, international experience and scientific method) combined with my appreciation for people make me a different candidate than the others, and I believe that difference can help hold all of us accountable to the residents of our wonderful county.
RICK YAFFE, Democrat
Rick Yaffe grew up in Pikesville, and attended all 2nd District Baltimore County Public Schools. He graduated from Pikesville High School in 1973, and the University of Maryland with a degree in Business Administration. In the late 1990’s Rick joined the Chestnut Ridge Volunteer Fire Company and within 9 months took over as President of the Company and served in that capacity for 11 years. He became an active volunteer fire fighter, EMT, and Paramedic. He is also a member of Pikesville Volunteer Fire Company.
Rick’s passion has always been helping others and in 2001 he opened a private ambulance company to do that.
Today, Rick’s company, Butler Medical Transport serves Baltimore and Washington with trained health care professionals 7 days a week, 365 days a year with offices in Baltimore County. Butler Medical Transport employs a staff of 300.
Rick and his wife, Eileen, have been married for 36 years and reside in Owings Mills and have 3 children: Ryan 32, Brad 26, and Rebecca 26 and two dogs.
Past and present affiliations:
- CCBC Trustee – Community College of Baltimore County
- Baltimore County Planning Board
- CCBC Foundation Board – Chair and member
- Landmark Preservation Commission for Baltimore County
- Chestnut Ridge Volunteer Fire Company – Past President
- Pikesville Volunteer Fire Company
- Beth El Synagogue – member and previous Board Member
- Jewish Vocational Services – Board Member
- Hawford Vocational Technical School Advisory Board Member
Kiwanis Club of Odenton
IZZY PATOKA, Democrat
Izzy Patoka grew up in Lochern. He attended Campfield Elementary School, Sudbrook Middle School and Woodlawn High School. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree and Master’s Degree at Towson University. Izzy is a parent, a planner, and public servant who has worked in business, civic life, and at the highest levels of state, county and local government to bring people together on behalf of making his community and county better places to live, work, and raise and family. A community leader and tireless advocate he has worked with elected officials, business leaders, clergy and civic organizations on behalf of the priorities that matter to Baltimore County, including public education, a stronger economy, affordable health care, efficient transportation, public safety, and a healthier environment.
A planner by training, Izzy believes that Baltimore County’s beauty, character, and vitality are shaped by both our suburban and rural character – and the ways in which we are successful at carefully balancing our population centers with our important commercial centers. As a champion of using community engagement to drive improvements in quality of life issues, Izzy believes strongly that Baltimore County’s long established Urban Rural Demarcation Line should continue to be a strong guide for maintaining our County’s diverse land use character.
Izzy not only stands up for the values we share, he has a track record of getting things done. That is why he was appointed to serve on Mayor Catherine Pugh’s Transition Team to develop recommendations to improve Baltimore’s quality of life as part f her Healthy Neighborhoods Committee. Izzy founded Baltimore’s Office of Neighborhoods. Our neighborhoods and communities are where progress happens. For eight years he served Governor Martin O’Malley as his chief liaison to community leaders both in and out of government; a role for which Izzy earned the reputation as a bridge builder and problem solver; someone who was able to bring people together from all walks of life, even folks who did not always agree on everything. He continued his work building bridges at LifeBridge Health – where he serves as Director of Community Development.
Izzy and his wife, Denise, have a 16 year old son, Rory. They are members of the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation and live in Sudbrook Park.
Izzy has extensive experience in strengthening communities throughout his professional career. He has served in these key leadership positions;
- Director of Community Development for LifeBridge Health
- Executive Director of the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives
- Director of the Governor’s Intergovernmental Affairs Office
- Founding Director of the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods
- Deputy Director for the Baltimore County Department of Planning
- Chief Capital Budgeting for the Baltimore County Department of Planning
- Division Chief for Capital Budgeting for the Baltimore City Department of Planning
Izzy is nationally certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP). He was recognized as a recipient of the National Association of Counties’ (NACO) Multi-Cultural Diversity Award for extraordinary outreach to ethnic communities. This prestigious award was co-sponsored by the Women Officials in NACO (WON), the National Association of Black County Officials (NABCO) and the National Association of Hispanic County Officials (NAHCO). Additionally, Izzy has been presented with the distinction of Fellow with the Academy for Excellence in Local Governance by the University of Maryland’s Institute for Governmental Service.
He is a proud graduate of Towson University where he received both his Bachelor of Science degrees and Master of Arts degree in Geography & Environmental Planning.
Izzy believes that community engagement is essential to community strength and he leads by example. As a community leader, Izzy’s efforts have included:
- Sudbrook Park Community Association Board Member
- George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology Parent Committee
- Pikesville Precinct Police Community Relations Council
- Franklin Precinct Police Community Relations Council
- Pikesville Chamber of Commerce
- Northwest Chamber of Commerce
- Pikesville-Greenspring Community Coalition
- Reisterstown-Owings Mills-Glyndon Coordinating Council
- Central Baltimore County Democratic Club
- The Greenmount School Board of Trustees
- Greater Pikseville Recreation Council Youth Basketball Coach
- Wellwood Baseball
- Reisterstown Baseball
- Neighborhoods United Board Member
- Pimilico Community Development Authority
- Liberty Road Business Association Board Member
- Dickeyville Community Association Board Member
- Forest Park Little League Youth Baseball Coach
- Randallstown Gateway Park Committee
HARLAN ZINN, Democrat
Harlan K. Zinn brings a wealth of academic training, organizational and management expertise, community service and a compassion for people to a potential role on the Baltimore County Council. His extensive experience and expertise enable him to evaluate issues, propose clear and representative solutions, and successfully implement popular positions of critical concern to his constituents.
Harlan earned a doctorate degree in counseling psychology and has years of experience in mental health counseling, research development, delivery of programs, and public policy on a national and state level. His role involved leading change, directing people, stressing accountability and continually improving an organization’s effectiveness. He possesses professional membership in several national organizations while serving in local professional organizations, community associations, and a regional land preservation organization.
Harlan has demonstrated the ability to build teams, develop strategic thinking for both the short and long term, and generate trust among his peers. He sees many challenges currently and in the future facing Baltimore County, which can be successfully addresses with the most effective Councilmanic team in place. His primary focus would be enhancing and enriching the quality of life in Baltimore County to its highest potential in a number of areas – education, housing, managerial accountability, jobs, elimination of fraud, improved communications and health services.
Baltimore County School Board
Dr. Anthony Glasser OD
Second Council District
WHY ARE YOU RUNNING FOR BOE?
I am running because I feel that BCPS has lost tough with what is important in effectively running a large, diverse educational system. Key issues facing us today are crumbling infrastructure, an ineffective and overpriced technology program, and a system that, instead of having administration supporting teachers in the classroom has them at odds with each other. We need new leadership to restore some common sense and order to our school system.
I am all for a responsible implementation of technology in our schools for the use of students and teachers. I do not feel that what we have now is the right fit for our schools. There is research out there that shows that too much screen time is not good for learning. By having a device for every child there is a feeling that every part of the curriculum needs to utilize them. We have children with $1000 plus devices that don’t even know how to read the instructions! There is some question as to whether these contracts were investigated fully and properly at the time they were signed. Too much of our precious resources were invested at this time when other needs were left untouched.
I believe we have come to the point where we are afraid to properly discipline children that are disrupting classrooms to the point where teachers cannot effectively conduct classes. Baltimore County Schools are not babysitting services and should not have to worry about what inconvenience a suspension or expulsion causes a parent. Parents of children that are in danger of disciplinary action should have plenty of notice to become a partner in changing their child’s behavior. Once again, I need to emphasize here that a school’s administrators should be totally supportive of the teachers in this matter.
I am 100% for a full state audit at this time. In any business or other agency with financial discrepancies a full outside audit would be called for, BCPS is no exception.
I believe we should be ashamed to have entered into such expensive computer contracts with schools in need of basic structural repairs. We cannot be an educational leader with crumbling schools and infrastructure. I believe we need to re-examine the computer contracts and find the money in a any way possible to fix this problem.
We are grossly under serving this population. We used to have separate facilities where we could concentrate resources and provide exceptional services for the most critical of the special education population. Now that we have moved those services to the schools, we need to provide much more support in the ways of teachers, para-educators, and administrative personnel. Due to budgetary problems, mostly due to the overpriced device contracts, BCPS has been cutting personnel rather than adding.
I was raised in District 2 and attended Fort Garrison Elementary School, Pikesville Junior High and Senior High. My wife, who is a para-educator at Pikesville Middle School, attended Franklin Junior and Senior High and we met when she moved to Pikesville High. My two sons and daughter went to the same District 2 schools I did. I currently live in my childhood home in District 2. I have been a student, parents and stakeholder in District 2 for most of my life. I remember the hay days of our system. I remember when families flocked to our district because of the quality of our school system. I want to see those days again!
I have a Facebook page at Dr Anthony Glasser OD for School Board. Please like my page for my posts and updates.
Second Council District
WHY ARE YOU RUNNING FOR BOE?
The BOE is a major organ of the BCPS, impacting o the system’s collective team, advocating for the education and safety of our children, staff, and faculty in Baltimore County Schools! It is the System’s manager. I want to serve as part of that team. Funding for our students/schools must be addresses to give ALL students a balanced and equitable opportunity to meet their intellectual and social potential with well trained, retained and financially supported faculty and staff. Programs to support, engage, and expand the intellectual progress of students, continuous and current staff development, and support services for students and staff must be offered and funded to address the needs and potential of every child and to demonstrate respect for the professionalism of faculty/staff members in every school. Funds must be levied to ensure that schools are safe and healthy environments in which to learn and work. Relationships with parents, community representatives, board members, system associations, system hierarchy, and elected officials must be forged to support all systemic initiatives and funding efforts.
Students and Teachers Accessing Tomorrow means, in my mind, teaching which is predicated on exploration, diversity, and creativity to open students not only to information but what to do with it….how to apply, evaluate, use, and synthesize that information. It is a circle; it is a circle that only a human being can direct, guide, or offer. Technological devices are wonderful and necessary tools but not substitutes for human interaction and support. Classrooms should be work/college readiness centers, possessing necessary accoutrements, both human and technical, which combine 21st century technology with interactive strategies using common core standards with an emphasis on “literacy, numeracy, and writing” in every class. In other words, a human can teach a child to use a computer for information and even to display one’s creativity, but a computer cannot replace the many ways a teacher can support a spirit, inspire creativity, challenge an intellect, or open the possibilities for tomorrow. The human and the technical tool, together, will prepare our children for the 21st century world in which we live.
Rules and policies are only as good as the ability to enforce them. Equitable, clear, consistent are adjectives that must be attached to behavior and discipline policies. Other components of meeting the policies include MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES, REFERRALS, STAFF DEVELOPMENT, and PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT. These words and services must apply to all stakeholders who are impacted by the policies. Parents must be an active part and force in knowing the policies and recognizing the consequences when the policies are broken. Everyone in the school must be speaking the same language about behavior. I believe in the Faculty Council as a force to make sure that the students get consistent policies and rules in the classrooms. When the rules and policies are violated, action must be immediate, equitable, and in concert with the policies of the school and System. Human relationships often stave off possible problems; school officials and teachers should understand and use this as a means of supporting a nurturing, yet disciplined school culture and environment; staff development must be an integral part of what school personnel have under their belts. Policies, laws, and consequences must also be measured by mental health and protective services rendered to our students; often these health and screening services are unavailable to families, leaving the policies and rules pointless, and creating a cycle of poor behavior. Policies must be levies with means to implement and enforce. Everyone deserves to feel safe in a school…everyday!
Clearly, there needs to be increased and improved protocols for spending in BCPS. The System must ask for bids for jobs. Outsourcing should be given a great deal of thought; if we have staff members who can handle jobs, we should do that before outsourcing. If training of system personnel to do certain jobs is cost effective, that should be done before outsourcing. Before engaging in large contracts, whether for infrastructure or instruction, careful needs assessments should be done and then vendors should be sought on a competitive basis. There must be consistency and oversight for funds allocated to the System. When schools are overcrowded, services cut, and buildings falling apart, the thought that bids are not consistently sought, that contractors and vendors are often over paid, money wasted and not directed to schools and children, then we are not serving our children. Those managing the System must be vigilant about how and what funds are shared, recorded and levied. We have seen the mistakes under the microscope; I believe the changes will now happen.
Schools must be monitored and maintained on a regular basis. No school should ever get to the point of brown water, lavatories that do not work, mold, or existing with serious infrastructure problems. If there is consistent facilities oversight then priority lists and protocols for maintenance and building can be set. School System personnel, local, and state officials should be kept apprised of the state of schools for funding purposes so that problems do not get to the point of costing more and being unsafe.
Overcrowding in many areas has existed for so long, I believe it has become the new norm; it is still counterproductive to a learning environment. I would like to see a more informed staffing process which considers the needs of the school as reflected in its demographics as a real solution to reducing over crowdedness. With this, administrators need training in how to organize a school to more effectively meet state requirements for graduation while offering students opportunities.
More thoughtful and designated funding and the monitoring of the facilities and of class sizes is a must! These require conscious planning and development of protocols to guide school administrators, facilities personnel, Board members, and elected officials with the information to address the needs of the schools, in terms of the structures and the precious human capital in them.
Special education services are mandated by local, state and federal guidelines. How these guidelines are implemented in the schools is often where the services break down or not addressed. I think most schools do a credible job of addressing, on paper, the needs of students who have been identified. The average teacher does not always know how to follow the directions for meeting the IEP and 504 plan, and the student is left in the same position as before a team. The average teacher is not qualified to always recognize and assess the students encountered on a daily basis. Staff development should be offered to teachers and administrators as a means of offering next level of the understanding of the children taught and how to meet their needs throughout the school and in the classroom; this would give more insight than what might be noticed in the midst of teaching the content…AWARENESS! Beyond the school based personnel, there are not enough trained professionals to support the wide range of needs of our children. Children with disabilities also fall into an abyss if they have disciplinary problems. Who provides services if they are not in the home school; what is the level of the services; what happens if parents cannot afford services or if they make a little too much for the services but not enough to pay for them out of their pockets? Funding must be found to offer services to students with special needs and to train those who work with them on a daily basis.
I worked in Baltimore City Schools as an English teacher from 1971-1983. I worked in BCPS from 1988-2012; I have been an English and theater teacher, English chair, Equity Office specialist, assistant principal at both Carver Center and Sudbrook in their first years, and principal at both Old Court Middle School and Randallstown High School (from where I retired in 2012). Every year I was an administrator, I taught English. In teaching, I found my “center”. I have worked on several BCPS committees and initiatives since retirement. I believe in what the Board does and must do to bring equity and parity for all students in this system.
Please contact me through:
P.O. Box 32122, Pikesville, MD 21282