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Danielle Kincaid, Susan Provance and Maryam Mohammadkhani are sworn in as newly elected board members.
provided by Springfield Public Schools
Danielle Kincaid, Susan Provance and Maryam Mohammadkhani are sworn in as newly elected board members.

SPS board elects Kincaid as president, Brunner as vice president

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The next president and vice president of the Springfield Public Schools Board of Education were chosen by split votes amid a discussion about division at yesterday’s meeting.

Danielle Kincaid and Judy Brunner were voted in as president and vice president, respectively, at the meeting, which was livestreamed through the district's YouTube page. Both votes were 4-3.

It's a return to the president role for Kincaid, who was elected along with Maryam Mohammadkhani and Susan Provance by voters last week. As vice president, Brunner succeeds Scott Crise, who ran an unsuccessful reelection campaign for his seat on the board.

"I think every single board member I heard wants this board to be more unified. The board will unify when the board members are ready to unify," Kincaid said following the votes. "I look forward to serving as your president for another year and working with all board members to ensure that this is our board. I know that board member Brunner and I will be able to do that as a team."

Board member Kelly Byrne, who also was nominated for the vice president role, received three votes, with Byrne, Steve Makoski and Mohammadkhani voting in favor. Voting in favor of Brunner for vice president were Brunner, Kincaid, Provance and Shurita Thomas-Tate.

Prior to Kincaid's election to president, Byrne nominated Brunner for the role, saying she would help bring unification and make 7-0 votes more commonplace.

"I truly feel that you are the best suited leader of this board, and I would ask that you consider to step up and lead this board," Byrne said of Brunner. "I think it's an opportunity to bring us together. I think you are one that would unite."

Makoski and Mohammadkhani also supported Brunner for president.

Brunner, however, declined the nomination and instead nominated Kincaid for president.

"I appreciate the kind words, I truly do. I am committed to serving our community. That's been my life's work in a number of different capacities," Brunner said. "I just truly do not believe that this is the year to do that, and I stand behind my nomination of Danielle Kincaid for president."

The vote for Kincaid was the same 4-3 count as for Brunner, with Byrne, Makoski and Mohammadkhani favoring Brunner for the role.

Prior to the votes on the new officers, Kincaid, Mohammadkhani and Provance were sworn in as newly elected board members. The board also said goodbye to Crise with a standing ovation.

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