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Tomah School Board candidate Michael Gnewikow

Tomah School Board candidate Michael Gnewikow

From the Meet the candidates: Here are the 8 people running for Tomah School Board series
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Mike Gnewikow

Mike Gnewikow

Age: 47

Background: Cranberry grower. “I was born and raised in Tomah. After graduating from Tomah High School in 1991, I attended UW-Eau Claire and received a degree in journalism advertising. I married my high school girlfriend, Tonya VanWychen, and we have raised four boys while living in the Warrens area. My wife is an education and exercise science teacher at the high school. I work at our family’s cranberry marsh, Wetherby Cranberry Company. I began working summers and school breaks on the cranberry marsh and have been there ever since. I did own and operate a small print and promotions company in Tomah for a few years but returned to cranberries full time as I was needed there. Starting from the bottom and working up to an owner/operator has taught me a lot about how to deal with different people at all levels of businesses and organizations.”

Why running: “I have always been intrigued by the thought of being on the school board. While raising four boys, coaching them in sports and helping run several businesses, time has been tough to come by. However, with two boys moving on to college, I believe I now have enough time to step in and be an asset to the school board.”

Top three issues:

“With a new administrator and activities/athletic director beginning soon, I think it is an important time to have a strong school board to help with these transitions.”

“We are also in the beginning stages of a facilities survey, which will give us extremely important information to help make some key decisions regarding buildings and grounds in our district.”

“I believe retaining quality staff is vital. It’s important to create and maintain an environment where quality administrators, teachers, students, employees and all members of the schools and district want to stay and be a part of the district. We need to retain these quality people for a long time and build the roots of a community that we can all be proud to be a part of.”

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Tomah Journal editor

Steve Rundio is editor of the Tomah Journal. Contact him at 608-374-7785.

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