Altoona Area School Board appoint new school board member

Local News

ALTOONA, Pa (WTAJ)–The Altoona Area School Board voted in resident Christopher Cook as their new board member Monday at their special meeting.

The board initially had a 5-2-1 vote for Cook before making the notion of voting unanimously. Cook is a graduate of the Altoona Area High School and a parent within the district. He’s always wanted to be involved in politics and found that being a member would be a great opportunity.

“I’m honestly ecstatic that the board voted and chose me,” Cook said. “It seems like an amazing opportunity that has been presented itself, and I’m very excited to serve.”

The appointing of a new member comes from the resignation of 10-year member Sharon Bream. Bream was the president of the board before resigning last month.

At the meeting, eight candidates presented their case to the board on why they should be in the seat. The board proceeded to have three candidates move forward to the second question before selecting the final member.

Besides being a lifelong resident and parent of the city, Cook has a diverse background. He’s been on boards at multiple other organizations and runs multiple businesses. He looks to bring in a perspective as a parent and help kids grow their education.

“I really just hope to bring another voice,” Cook said. “I’m a district parent, so I feel that it’s important to have some parents on the board as well. But really just an extra voice of reason.”

President of the board, Frank Moley, said that the candidates that presented Monday all presented a compelling argument for the seat. However, the board felt that Cook’s background and expertise in areas would align with the needs of the position and community.

“We need board members who have a different opinions and experiences in which they base those opinions,” Moley said. They’re able to work with eight other people to make important decisions within our community.”

Cook noted in his first interview how the education system is broken nationwide. He said it’s essential to help children succeed by teaching them basic life skills like communication and personal finance.

Cook’s term is set for two years and is effective immediately. The board said they plan to formally introduce him to the public at the next school board meeting Monday, Jan. 10. Cook is looking to be a team player along with the eight other board members.

“I want to be part of a team. I do not want to jump in here as a spearheader or bull. I just want to be able to contribute and be a team member,” Cook said.

“I think he has a well-rounded background,” Moley said. “He’ll be able to add quite a bit to our board, you know, in terms of his expertise and experience, and that’s what we need.”

Sign up for the WTAJ Newsletter for the latest local news, weather, and community events that matter to you.

Copyright 2022 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss