(Editor’s Note: TAPinto South Plainfield will be running featuring articles on Keith Both, Pio Pennisi, and Stephanie Wolak, the three newly-elected members of the South Plainfield Board of Education. Articles will be published in alphabetical order. Please note these exclusive interviews are property of TAPinto and can not be share or republished without the consent of TAPinto)

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – On Election Day 2017, residents Keith Both, Pio Pennisi and Stephanie Wolak each secured seats on the South Plainfield Board of Education (BOE), defeating four other candidates – including the three incumbents. All three newly elected BOE members will serve three-year terms, effective the BOE’s January 2018 reorganization meeting.

Wolak, a resident of the borough for almost 20 years, garnered 1,589 votes to win her first bid for the BOE. “I sincerely want to thank everyone who voted for me. I hope to make their votes count and I will do my best to work hard for the children and keep the budget in line,” Wolak told TAPinto South Plainfield, adding, ““I am not a politician. I can only tell you that I do not take this position lightly. I will do my best to do what is right for the children in our schools.”

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Wolak, a licensed real estate agent with experience as a residential and private mortgage underwriter, is currently a referral agent. She and her husband, Councilman Joe Wolak, have three children who have been in the South Plainfield School District since they began kindergarten. On a local front, Wolak has been on the South Plainfield Public Library Board for three years the South Plainfield Public Celebrations Committee for four years as well as a member of the Friends of the Library.

As a member of the BOE, Wolak said she will work to bring new programs that will ‘broaden the future’ for all of children. “We need our children to be ready to succeed in this fast paced world,” she said.

Wolak would also like to see her goal of establishing vegetable and flower gardens at each district school come to fruition. “I believe every grade level and every class could use the gardens in their curriculum, in the long run we need to feed our world and we need people to do that. We need to plant the seeds in the ground and in our students’ minds,” she said, adding, “Gardens don't cost much money and the fruits of everyone's labor will be truly beneficial to all.”

Wolak said she is looking forward to serving on the BOE and feels the board ‘needs to be a team that works together to achieve goals to make us a great school system.’

“I am not a politician, I can only tell you that I do not take this position lightly, I will do my best to do what is right for the children in our schools. I live on a budget and I do the best for my children and my family.  I believe we should not over spend but need to spend where and when needed,” Wolak said, adding,  “I am looking forward to a productive three years while I am on the board of education.”

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