April 13, 2022, R-C Letters to the Editor

Early morning on the Bently Ranch. Photo Special to The R-C by Jay Aldrich

Early morning on the Bently Ranch. Photo Special to The R-C by Jay Aldrich

Genoans do for themselves, again


The Town of Genoa and Friends of Genoa have again exercised a long tradition of initiative and self-sufficiency in addressing the endemic Genoa town speeding issue by installing a Radar Speed Flasher, at a cost of $5,000, at the south end of Genoa near the Post Office on State Route 206 Foothill Road. 

This effort was necessitated by the Nevada Department of Transportation District 2 declining to underwrite the cost by pleading budget penury, despite the availability of numerous annual and more recent multimillion-dollar federal grants.

The flasher is the culmination of a three-year effort commencing with a petition signed by all the residents of south Genoa along SR 206, followed by Town Board Resolution 19-01, requesting that the Douglas County Sheriff and the Superintendent of the Nevada Highway Patrol direct “additional traffic control and

speed mitigation in the 25 mph limit areas.” 

Through this initial effort it is hoped that two other devices can be placed by Douglas County on the north access of Genoa along Jacks Valley Road, and another by NDOT on the Genoa Lane access, this time underwritten by the respective governmental agencies as tools in assisting the Sheriff and Highway Patrol.

The Radar Speed Flasher, beyond displaying approaching vehicle speed, also provides numerous other options, such as: generating weekly reports of the number of vehicles passing, those exceeding the maximum specified speed, by dates and time of the day, etc.

It can also accommodate cameras and additional strobe lights.

Hopefully, this initial local collaborative effort, in providing this flasher, will be the catalyst by which the various state and county governmental agencies can more efficiently and expeditiously address this speeding and other issues in Genoa.

H. William Brooks


Enjoy your rock


Congratulations to the “thoughtful” person(s) who managed to remove the 80-pound perfectly shaped Nevada rock that resided on the Carson Valley Trails Association Sierra Canyon Trail about 1.6 miles above the trailhead. We hope you enjoy it in your garden as much as we enjoyed seeing it on the trail all these years.

Kirk Dixon


‘Political correctness’ run amok


This week a new Supreme Court Justice Nominee is going through the confirmation process. The nominee was asked if she could define what a woman is. She declined to answer the question saying, “she is not a biologist”. Look, she made it through law school, so my bet is she is smart enough to answer the question. Her likely refusal is the desire to be “politically correct.” If we are at the point in the country where we can’t define something so simple as a woman, then it’s time to do a little soul searching. The Supreme Court is reserved to decide the most challenging legal issues of our time. If the members can’t define what a woman is (pretty simple) because of the pressure around “political correctness” how can we expect them to make decisions on more complex issues that will have a significant impact on our lives? 

Jeff Miladin


Great things happening in Douglas schools


I am writing this letter to celebrate the many great things happening in Douglas County School District under the current leadership team in conjunction with many impressive members of the Douglas County School Board. I write this letter as a parent of children in DCSD, community member, and DCSD employee of 20 years and can attest that opportunities and support for student growth and achievement are flourishing more than ever before thanks to the incredible dedication of a countless list of stakeholders. In recent years, School Board Trustees and DCSD leadership have become a powerfully collaborative team with a shared desire to support our youth, personalize learning for all students, and modernize education in order to prepare our children for a future full of countless opportunities. Students are given shared responsibility in learning and are empowered to become the best version of themselves. I have personally experienced the commitment of Trustees Heather Jackson, Doug Englekirk, and Robbe Lehmann as they have taken active roles in an important initiative to ensure grading and assessment of learning is consistent, fair, and reliable as they actively participate in regular meetings with the DCSD Grading Committee. Additionally, Heather Jackson frequently seeks to learn about what happens in schools across the valley and lake communities and how the school board can support the great opportunities that exist on all campuses. These members ask thoughtful questions, have high standards, and carry out their duties with fidelity in order to support the DCSD community. 

The bond being formed between these members and the district is inspired by the great goals, initiatives, and achievements across all schools that are recognized by these truly committed board members. This is a bond that is not common in other school districts, and one that enhances the opportunities our students have for success. In fact, at the recent NCDC 22 conference held in North Carolina that I attended along with Jackson, Lehmann, and School Board President Linda Gilkerson, attendees from other school districts were highly impressed that the DCSD guests at the conference included three Trustees. At NCDC 22, the DCSD team gained valuable tools in the EPIC journey to unpack core values of instruction, redefine the student experience, and empower modern teachers to maximize education for all learners. 

I have reviewed the list of candidates as the district prepares to fill the future open DCSD School Board seats. It is without hesitation that I advocate for the election of Jackson, Lehmann, and Roberta Butterfield. Each of these candidates recognize the many accomplishments in our school district and will work diligently to promote further growth and success. These candidates are truly invested in supporting DCSD; all have or have had children in DCSD schools, many of whom I have had the pleasure of teaching and cheering on at the sidelines of community and school athletics. These candidates represent the community well and are eager to continue those efforts in the future. 

Kelly Winter


Casting vote for school trustees


By way of background information, I am not a native Nevadan, but I have called Gardnerville my home for 44.5 years. My husband worked for Bently Nevada Corporation for 41 of those years. I worked for Douglas County School District for some 15 years as a special education aide then as a middle school substitute teacher after completing my B.A. at UNR at the tender age of 55. 

Both our daughters attended Douglas County schools K-12 and were well prepared to continue on to earn advanced college degrees. Both are successful professionals in this community. I now have five grandchildren attending elementary, middle, and high school in Douglas County. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the quality of education provided in this county is superior. As was the case with my two girls, each of my grands is receiving an educational foundation in mathematics, language, social studies, the arts, and science that will put them squarely on the path to becoming thoughtful, discerning, problem-solving, truth-seeking, engaged, tolerant, questioning adults. 

In the upcoming school board election, I will be casting my vote for the trustees who will protect and nurture this culture of excellence in our schools. Robbe Lehmann, Heather Jackson, and Roberta Butterfield have the perspective, necessary experience, and service-minded focus that will continue to serve our students and to represent our community well.

Bobby Goodspeed


Supporting school board incumbents


I would like to write in support of the two incumbent Douglas County School board candidates, Heather Jackson and Robbe Lehmann as well as new candidate Roberta Butterfield. It is vital to keep Lehmann and Jackson in office, and with the terming out of Ross Chichester, elect Robert Butterfield for District 7.

As many teachers and parents know the last two years have been a very challenging time for education. With the support of our Superintendent Keith Lewis and the current school board, we kept the kids in school, either virtually or physically, much longer than many of our neighboring states. The Douglas County School District is now facing an even bigger challenge as classroom instruction is scrutinized, and even the safe haven for many of our students, the school library is under attack for having so-called subversive books on the shelf.

Not every student is alike. Some don’t care about reading while others can’t wait for a new book to devour. As a librarian for Pau-Wa-Lu Middle School I value and respect all of our student readers. The library is stocked with age-appropriate material that has been thoughtfully purchased with every young student in mind.

Our current board members recognize and respect the district employee’s ability to do their jobs. Please re-elect Robbe Lehmann, Heather Jackson and newcomer Roberta Butterfield to protect the American freedoms we have. An open library is one benefit of education. The school candidate I support ensure the libraries will be vibrant centers of the school.

Susan Bullard


Supporting Lehmann, Butterfield and Jackson


I am writing to share my support for Robbe Lehmann, Roberta Butterfield, and Heather Jackson for the Douglas County School Board.

As a proud graduate of CVMS and DHS, and as a teacher of seven years in DCSD, I can attest to the quality education that our students receive. We need a school board and a community that supports teachers and students as we emerge from the disruption of the pandemic and work to provide every student a safe learning experience that prepares them for their future.

There are three candidates for the school board who have spent time in our schools, talking with teachers, and understand the professionalism with which we approach our work: Robbe Lehmann, Heather Jackson, and Roberta Butterfield.

Robbe Lehmann and Heather Jackson, both current members of the board, have proven their commitment to the education of students and the wellbeing of everyone in our schools. Roberta Butterfield worked as an administrative assistant in the counseling department at DHS. Each of these candidates understands the reality of education in 2022.

Trustee Jackson, a former Scarselli PTO president whose children attended DCSD schools, has attended numerous district committee meetings to work with teachers and parents. She has visited many of our schools to hear what administrators and teachers need. As a parent of DCSD students, she is well aware of what is and is not taught in our schools.

Trustee Lehmann, also a parent of DCSD students, has proven his commitment to the highest quality education possible for students. During the fall of 2021, he spent his own time researching books and board policies and speaking with students and teachers about the content students are learning in school. His conclusion-that students are learning age-appropriate content from teachers who maintain a separation between their personal and professional lives- is correct and appreciated.

Trustees Lehmann and Jackson also recently attended a national education conference and reported excitement about the direction DCSD is headed. 

Ms. Butterfield has vowed to promote parent, school, and community collaboration. She supports the mental health of students. As a former project manager and financial analyst, the real-world skills she would bring to the board, in addition to her balanced perspective as the mother of two recent DHS graduates would be invaluable additions to the board.

It is disheartening to hear public comments and to read statements maligning the work of teachers in DCSD. Our community needs to focus on the real issues facing our students. These issues include providing for the mental wellbeing of students and staff and instilling students with the knowledge, tools, and confidence to achieve their goals. By uniting behind candidates with the right priorities, we can ensure a positive future for our students and our community. It is vital to get out and vote in the primary election for school board candidates who clearly support strong public schools and a safe learning environment for all students. I urge you to vote for Lehmann, Jackson, and Butterfield for the school board.

Alyssa Park


Jackson a great school board trustee


During the upcoming election season, we have the opportunity to elect three school board members. As a former educator in Douglas County, I believe it is important to have a strong school board to continue the excellent work that has been done in our County. 

One candidate that I strongly support is Heather Jackson. She currently sits on the board and has proven herself to be thoughtful and careful in the decisions she makes. She works well and respectfully with a wide variety of people; people trust her and listen to her. She takes the time to do her homework and fully understand the issues she is working on. She has visited multiple schools in our district and has taken the time to discover the strengths of our schools and the needs she sees in each. Having four children of her own that have or are attending Douglas schools, she has intimate knowledge of what it is like to be a student and a parent in the Douglas School District.

Robbe Lehmann is another candidate that is up for reelection. He has proven himself to be dedicated to improving the school district and has always put the needs of our children first, even if he faces opposition from others.  He takes the time to educate himself on current issues facing the district and always makes decisions based on what is best for the students of Douglas County. He is dedicated to high standards and rigorous teaching. The residents of Douglas County can count on Mr. Lehmann for honest, unbiased dedication to improving our schools.  

The final candidate I am supporting is Roberta Butterfield. She was a business, marketing, economics and math instructor at WNC, and has been a financial analyst in a variety of positions. Because of her experience and master’s degree in business, she understands finance and will be an asset when working on the budget for our district. She is currently working at Douglas High School, has school age children and is dedicated to all the students of Douglas County. She knows the importance of communication between schools and parents and the importance of listening to the needs of our parents, as well as the needs of Douglas schools. 

I truly believe our School District can only get better with these three excellent candidates sitting on our Board.

Maria Falconieri


Supporting current trustees


I write this letter in support of the incredible work that has been done--and continues to happen every day--here in our very own Douglas County Schools. In the upcoming school board trustee elections, the fine voters of this county will have the opportunity to support this great work, or to poison it.

To support it means to vote for school board trustee candidates who are actively involved with our schools, who find ways to support our schools and therefore our kids. A school board trustee should have familiarity with the schools, and if they have children, those children should attend those schools. The one unforgivable sin for a school board trustee would be to use that important position--and therefore use the children of our county — to promote a political agenda.

Three of the candidates for school board trustee have the exact experience and supportive viewpoint that we need so that we may carry on the incredible work done in our classrooms every day. Those candidates are Robbe Lehmann, Heather Jackson and Roberta Butterfield. I urge everyone to research the platforms of these excellent candidates and how they contrast with their politically motivated opponents.

Robbe Lehmann has served two terms on our Board and is looking to serve a third. He attends ceremonies, he sits on committees, he challenges the status quo, and he supports the entire staff. He wants what’s best for the students, and he does all this respectfully and professionally. 

Heather Jackson is in her first term as trustee and has worked tirelessly to support the staff and students of Douglas County. Heather is a great problem solver and her exhaustive research into the many problems brought on by COVID-19 is just one of the many reasons DCSD stayed open last year when many districts could not. 

Roberta Butterfield has graduated two children through Douglas High School and has worked as a guidance counselor as well. Roberta brings a powerful intellect and a compassionate curiosity to bear and will be a great asset for our students and families. Roberta cares about our kids, not about politics.

As a retired educator of 30 years, right here in Douglas County, I can attest to the influence a school board election can have on the direction and morale of an entire district, from kindergarten students all the way up to the superintendent. I hope the voters of Douglas County will join me in supporting Lehmann, Jackson, and Butterfield for school board trustee so that we may carry on our tradition of excellence in our schools.

Lyndon Jacobson


Stop causing fear


Virginia, regarding your April 4 letter, I encourage you to pause, take a breath and relax. 

CRT is not as scary as you want to believe. Sydney Hastings, who sought to calm fears and hysteria around CRT with her excellent opinion piece, seemingly did nothing to reassure you. You disagreed with Haynes for calling CRT a manufactured crisis and made all sorts of allegations connecting CRT to Marxism. Are you aware of FOX’s role in manufacturing the crisis? Or do you buy into everything they say without using discernment to weed out manipulation and falsehood?

You cited “Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion” as CRT’s Marxists driven remedies. I wonder, which of those qualities cause you the most fear? Our entire country is a hodgepodge of diversity, even from before Europeans came to this land. Equality is written into our Declaration of Independence. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal...” When we pledge allegiance to our flag, we pledge to support our Republic and its principles which includes “Liberty and Justice for All.” Diversity, Equality, Inclusion... those sound-like principles of Democracy to me. So, we have a difference of opinion. You say it’s Marxists. I say your representation of Marxism doesn’t coincide with my research. 

With regard to your statement about those intent on changing the world, you wrote, “Marxists have been mounting a well-planned, coordinated takeover for more than a century. “Really? What is your proof? It sounds like another one of those far-fetched conspiracy theories put out by Qanon... along the line “Kennedy isn’t dead and is coming to be Trump’s new vice-president,” or “eat magic dirt to keep yourself healthy.” 

Here’s my theory, based on what I have observed over many decades, about those with the intent of changing the world. It’s uncoordinated and messy: People have consciously chosen to evolve, out of old damaging and constricting patterns that oppress, into more freedom with more responsibility. It started in 1980 when drunkenness, heretofore condoned with silence, was placed in the limelight for the problem it was. That opened the door to reveal all the “skeletons in the closet “which, for generations, were whispered about and kept secret. Spousal abuse, incest, gambling addictions, homosexuality, menopause... all those skeletons exposed to the light of day. Most recently we, individually, have tackled the more difficult problems of racism and chauvinism. There is push back because that level of change is monumental. Change is not about a Marxist takeover or liberalism, it’s about individuals consciously choosing to no longer engage in or allow the constriction of lies and secrecy to run their lives. Disparaging them, to some that’s “Woke,” to others “Enlightenment.” 

Your use of Marxism to manipulate fear is obvious. Do you need it to justify rejecting the reality of existing racism? My unsolicited advice is to stop giving your power away to fear. Negativity is weak. It cannot stand up to Truth, Beauty, Goodness, Love... those are eternal. 

Joan Costa 



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