April ballot to feature two PW-S School Board races

Three vying for two Port seats, at-large seat also draws interest
By 
BILL SCHANEN IV
Ozaukee Press Staff

There will be two Port Washington-Saukville School Board races on the April ballot.

In one of those contests, three candidates are running for two seats representing the City of Port Washington on the board. They are Karen Krainz, Johnny Lanser and incumbent Brian Stevens.

Incumbent Kelly O’Connell-Perket, who with 24 years in office is one of the board’s three senior members, is not seeking re-election.

Krainz, 58, a retired actuary who graduated from Port Washington High School in 1981, said she had the time and talents to contribute to the School Board.

“I care about our kids and their futures,” she said. 

Lanser, a 35-year-old real estate agent and Port High graduate, has been critical of the School District for its lack of communication with parents. He said that is the reason he pulled his four children out of district schools.

“I’m the father of four school-age children and I didn’t know what was going on in the school district,” he said. “With this lack of transparency, I thought it’s time for me to get involved.”

Stevens, a 53-year-old engineer, was appointed to the board in 2014 and elected the following year. He currently serves as the board’s vice president.

In the other race on the ballot, Richard Sternhagen is challenging incumbent Yvonne Klotz for the at-large seat on the board, which can be held a person living anywhere in the district.

Sternhagen, 63, who worked in management roles in the food service industry before retiring, said he wants to bring “strategic direction,” to the district in an effort to help free it from a “quagmire of just getting by” and elevate it to become one of the elite school systems in the area.

Klotz, 57, is a retired teacher who was elected in 2019 to become the first person to hold the board’s newly created at-large seat.

Both Klotz and Sternhagen live in the City of Port Washington.

Members of the district’s nine-person School Board serve three-year terms.

The general spring election is Tuesday, April 5.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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