Election Day in Cheltenham

Tuesday (November 7th) is election day. Please get out to the polls, we need your energy and involvement; convince someone you know to vote as well!

This is a final request as you think about how to cast your ballot. I humbly ask that you vote for the candidates who will best represent you. Specifically: Bill England, Chris Pender, Pam Henry, and myself.

All four of us are Democrats — this is important, even if some people say to ignore party — but … ignore party for a moment.

Here’s why we rock

I want to share some of what each of us brings to the table and hopefully you can appreciate why we work so well as a team:

  • Chris Pender has dedicated his life to building programs that support children. He is currently working to reshape the Girl Scouts of America in New Jersey. He has created mentoring programs, is the president of CAN (Children’s Achievement Network), coaches youth sports, the list goes on. Chris has three children, all three graduated from Cheltenham and from college. His perspective from working with kids — providing mentorship, guidance, and compassion — is exactly what this district needs. Nobody else running comes close to Chris on this front.
  • Bill England has been serving on our school board for four years and has dedicated his life to social work. He brings a passion for our district unlike anything I’ve seen, and his experience as board president has taught him how to evaluate complex challenges. We can rely on Bill to stand up and defend every single one of our kids, to champion the value of education, and to make sure the board is thinking of every student when we are considering changes.
  • Pam Henry brings expertise in something that every community faces: change. She is a professional change agent and has a keen eye for identifying problems, designing solutions, and making sure that execution is done in a way that respects everybody involved. She brings experience, methodology, and concrete tools to the table in addition to the genuine wisdom that comes from being the parent of three daughters and the champion of their education.
  • Dan Schultz (that’s me) is a CHS graduate and I’ve dedicated my life to building tools that help people understand the actions of their government and politicians. My wife and I moved to Cheltenham so our daughter could attend the same schools we did. I am a professional problem solver — a technologist — and I bring years of experience thinking about how people might be affected by change. Accountable government and thoughtful communication are my passion, and I hope to be able to use that to serve our kids.

Each of us brings an important set of skills and ideas. We round each other out. You can read more about us over here.

And here’s why we rock the party

Now put the (D) back. This is actually important, because party affiliation reflects a set of core values.

Here are a few things we stand for:

  • We believe that investment in education opens doors for our kids and makes our community stronger.
  • We believe in working together to lift up our community and students in need.
  • We believe in science, art, creativity, logic, critical thinking, and pragmatic decision making.
  • We believe in accountable governance and effective communication.
  • We believe in the power of community to solve problems together.
  • We believe in thoughtful solutions that reflect the complexity of the problems faced in our schools.
  • We believe the rights of employees.
  • We believe in inclusion, equity, and social justice.

Endorsement is a vetting process, and there is a reason for it. If we didn’t stand for these things, we would not have received the Democratic endorsement or won the nomination of the Democratic residents of Cheltenham last May. You can learn more about our values over here.

If our experiences and skills determine how effectively we solve problems, our values root us to guiding principles while we do it. Practically this means that we will make decisions that benefit all of our children; we will strengthen the quality of our science, math, arts, and technology curriculums; we will be accountable; and we want to make sure that all voices are heard and incorporated in the decisions pursued by our district.

I hope that you will ultimately decide that all four of us deserve your vote — I believe we do. If you have any questions type them and I’ll try to reply in time.