School Board Candidate for District 4 Nick Steffens held his campaign kick-off on Tuesday evening at Wings Plus in Coral Springs.
Despite the rain, Steffens and volunteers had a good turnout of of supporters which included two mayors. School Board District 4 covers Parkland, Coral Springs, Tamarac, North Lauderdale and parts of Margate.
Steffens is a civil litigation and family law attorney who is a former member of the Parkland Education Advisory Board. He is also is Broward County Commissioner Stacy Ritter’s appointee to the Children’s Services Board. Parkland Mayor Michael Uldine gave a brief introduction before he turned the floor over to Steffens who made a passionate speech about schools, and the role he sees himself as a school board member.
Besides the fiduciary role as the checks and balances between superintendent and staff, Steffens wants to bring stakeholders together in the district. Since Broward County is the sixth largest district in the nation he would like to see the county pushing genuine education legislation in Tallahassee and in Washington.
“Public education, especially in the state of Florida, is at a critical moment,” said Steffens. “Broward County needs someone who will ensure students come first when dollars are spent. Further, we need someone that is willing to reach out to the diverse stakeholders, including parents, student groups, teachers, unions, employees, district staff and third party service providers, when the important decisions come up.”
He adds, “The hallmark of this campaign will be my commitment to speak up and fight the assault on public education being waged in Tallahassee and, to a lesser degree, Washington, D.C. The sixth largest school district in the country should be an impact player in the decisions made in both capitols and my intention is to ensure that happens.”
As the father of a 4 year old, Steffens says he’s in this for the long haul. His daughter will be in Broward County public schools for a long time and he wants to make sure our schools are as good as the ones that he attended while growing up in Syosset, New York.
While most candidates would prefer a written speech, Steffens spoke without any notes and spoke so quickly that it was impossible for me to take notes. I must admit that I underestimated Steffens’ knowledge about school issues. Not only was I impressed by his grasp of the issues, but also by how passionate he was about education.
Steffens may just be a serious contender in August as well as someone to watch in November.