Election: school board Area1 David Brady
David Brady wants voters to know he is not your typical incumbent school board member.
Brady, who is running against Veronica Husley for the Area 1 seat on the school board, says he isn’t convinced everything the board is doing is necessarily correct and is willing to listen to what the people want.
“There are a lot of unanswered questions and we need to take the time to seriously evaluate all concerns, not just march on thinking what we are listening to from teachers is not substantive,” Brady said.
He said the school board has no choice but to go along with raising the standards that the state has required, but said he wouldn’t be opposed to slowing down the implementation of the school district’s competency requirements.
“Of the options, I still believe the competencies are the right way to go, but maybe the “how” is what needs to change. The timetable and the issues teachers have need to be discussed to ensure the implementation is successful,” he said.
Brady said he thinks the board meetings with teachers at the schools have been a step in the right direction.
“I welcome the honest exchange of ideas. It is the only way we are going to make the organization better. It may call for disagreement along the way, but it ensures the dialogue that takes place is meaningful,” Brady said. “We have tremendous talent in this district to deal with the issues. We have what it takes to make this work, but there are a lot of wrinkles and we have to find ways to iron out the wrinkles.”
Besides his work on the school board, Brady sits on the Parks and Recreation board. When he’s not working, he’s at home with his five children and his wife Mary.
Brady’s children are Darren Brady, 11, Kelsey Gerber, 12, Brian Brady, 13, Christian Gerber, 15, and Jessica Brady, 15.
Brady has a master’s degree in public administration, has worked in finance since 1985 and owned Brady and Associates financial services firm since 1998. He has taught investment management at WNCC. Previously he was a police officer with the City of Redondo Beach, Calif., and was the union president for the officers. He is a Douglas County Sheriff’s Office reserve deputy.
Area One covers the Johnson Lane and Jacks Valley areas. Brady also ran unopposed four years ago. He was appointed by the board a year before that.
Although he is involved with many things, he said he wants to “finish what I started,” and remain on the school board through the competency implementation.
“At this juncture, board experience is going to be critical to provide perspective to move forward,” he said.
However, Brady admitted he thinks the public and the teachers’ perceptions of the school district will probably get worse before it gets better – and by extension, the board’s job will get more difficult.
“As retention becomes an issue, we are going to have to examine if what we are doing is legally defensible,” he said. “With declining enrollment, the (financial) pinch is going to get worse. I definitely don’t have the ‘life is wonderful’ perspective with the school district and never have. I am probably one of the more cautious individuals on the board. I typically see the glass is half empty.”
However, Brady said, people should know he just wants what is best for the children of Douglas County.
“I’ve never had an agenda. I try to do the best job I can. There are people who bring single issues to the table, and that’s not good for the district,” Brady said.
Brady said one of the biggest jobs the board is going to face next year is convincing the Legislature the school districts need more money.
“This year, there is a higher awareness state-wide that something needs to take place to reform education funding,” he said. “I think this year, we need to make more of an effort to let people like (state Assemblyman Lynn) Hettrick and (state Sen. Lawrence) Jacobsen know that a new system of funding needs to be set up.”
Brady is positive about the board’s relations with the teacher’s association.
“I’d like to think the worst is behind us and we can build from that. We need to find common ground with the administration, the board and the association to work together and collaborate for the Legislature. We will need that to go forward,” he said.