Earlier this summer, four community-minded individuals announced they are running for four open seats on the Sparta Board of Education (BoE). Mike McGovern, Dr. Robert Zywicki, and Dr. Richard Snellings are seeking election to three-year seats, and Dr. Vanessa Serrano is seeking election to a one-year seat.  They are accomplished professionals, loving parents, and committed community volunteers. Decades of successful leadership experience in the fields of business, medicine, and education combined with an unwavering commitment to the students of Sparta will enable this team to make the right decisions on the BoE to take our town’s public schools to the next level. 

Mr. Mike McGovern and his wife, Patti, and their three children, Jack, Kate, and Sarah, have been Sparta residents since 2010.  Mike was previously elected to the Board in 2016 and served a three-year team during which such initiatives as one-to-one computers in the classroom, enhanced school security and the turf field at the high school all came to fruition.  Professionally, Mike is a 23 year wireless telecom executive managing the deployment of critical telecom infrastructure nationwide, managing budgets of several hundred million dollars a year.  He received an Honorable Discharge from the US Naval Reserves, and graduated from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana with a BS in Political Science.

Dr. Robert Zywicki, is a current member of the board, having been appointed to fill a vacancy created earlier this year.  Rob, his wife Melanie, and their four children Olivia, Julia, Robert, and Theodore have lived in Sparta for five years. He volunteers as a lacrosse coach and the girl's division scheduler for Sparta Youth Lacrosse, as well as, a coach for Sparta Youth Football. Professionally, Rob is an award-winning accomplished superintendent of schools, experienced consultant to school leadership teams, and an innovative graduate school professor teaching school law and school finance at Kean University, Montclair State University, and Saint Peter’s University.  Rob also serves as the Professional Development Coordinator for the Rutgers University Graduate School of Education's Center for Effective School Practices. Rob has been appointed to several statewide councils and has received numerous accolades for forward-thinking initiatives.  Dr. Zywicki received his Ed.D. and M.A. degrees in Educational Leadership from St. Peter’s University’s Caulfield School of Education, as well as, a B.A. in History and English from Rutgers University. 

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Dr. Richard Snellings is a long time resident of Sparta, moving to the area 12 years ago.  He has four children in Sparta schools, and his wife, Jacqueline, has been active in the schools, recently serving as secretary for the Sparta Middle School PTO.  Richard went to Rutgers University for his undergraduate degree and received his medical doctorate at UMDNJ.  He currently is a radiologist and managing partner for multiple imaging centers throughout northern New Jersey, including three locations in Sparta.  His roles include aiding in capital expenditure decisions, reviewing financials, evaluating employees, practice marketing, and strategic planning.   Prior to taking over management of the outpatient imaging centers, Richard served as Chairman of the Radiology Department at Newton Medical Center for 2 years.

Dr. Vanessa Serrano and her husband have been members of this great community since 2011. She has two children attending Alpine Elementary School. Vanessa received a Bachelor’s of Science degree as a Political Science major from William Paterson University, a Masters of Arts degree in Administration and Supervision from New Jersey City University, and a Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Teacher Leadership from Walden University. Currently, Dr. Serrano is a Vice-Principal at an elementary school and absolutely loves what she does! She is an active volunteer in the school community and is also a member of the Junior  Women’s Club of Sparta, committed to promoting volunteerism, improving our community, and fostering new friendships.

Show your support by casting your ballot for the team committed to Integrity, Transparency, and Innovation:

#2 Mike McGovern

#3 Robert Zywicki

#4 Richard Snellings

1 Yr Vanessa Serrano

To learn more, facebook.com/mcgovernzywickisnellingsserranoforspartaboe2020.

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