WEST CALDWELL, NJ — Meet Caldwell-West Caldwell Board of Education candidate Marie Lanfrank

Marie Lanfrank is a Pubic School Administrator who attended and graduated from a parochial elementary school and high school, the College of NJ and Seton Hall University. She has a BA in Mathematics and an MA in Education with a concentration in Counseling and Special Services. Her post-graduate studies included courses at various New Jersey institutions of higher learning to attain permanent certification as a Supervisor, Principal, Chief School Administrator and provisional certification as a Business Administrator.

Q: Why are you running for the board of education?

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A: As a resident of Caldwell for 41 years whose child graduated from James Caldwell High School and a former educator, I place a high value on education and as such have a vested interest in continuing to work along with Dan Cipoletti and the current board of education members to preserve and improve the quality of education of our school system. The quality of the public schools is the most critical factor in protecting residents’ investments in their homes. When schools meet their goals of enhancing educational offerings, the equity in homes grow, businesses prosper and students receive an education that prepares them for higher education, the military and/or the workforce rather than the unemployment lines

Q: Why do you feel you deserve the job? What qualifies you for it?

Having served as a Caldwell-West Caldwell Board of Education member for three years, I have a working understanding of the issues that the district is currently facing and what is coming down the pike. For the past three years, Dan Cipoletti and I have participated in the NJ School Boards Association’s mandated training which included the role of a board member, Board Governance, School Law, School Ethics Act, Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying, Open Public Meetings Act, Rice Notices, Collective Bargaining, Negotiations, Litigation, Hiring Issues, Doctrine of Necessity, Labor Relations, Finance and Student Achievement. So we are certainly ahead of the game and better prepared than our opponent.

Having worked for 30+ years in the educational arena as a teacher, supplemental instructor, learning consultant, assistant principal and director of special services in urban and suburban K-12, regional and vocational school districts, I am well versed in all aspects of public education and therefore have the benefit of knowing what it takes to build an excellent school system. As a result, my experience in the field of education is an additional asset and compliments the expertise of the other board members.  

Q: Apart from running for the school board, what other ways are you involved in the town?

A: Apart from serving on the school board, I have been actively involved in the community. In 2007 I helped establish the Caldwell West Caldwell Education Foundation. I was the president for many years and am currently a trustee. During my presidency, I initiated the fundraising events of the Taste of the Caldwells and Dancing with our Community Stars to provide a source of funds not available via federal, state and local sources to assist the district with the funding of district wide projects and programs that foster and promote basic and innovative approaches for excellence in education.

At the current time, I am a trustee of the Caldwell Merchants’ Association and serve on the Art on the Avenue committee. I am also on the committee for the “Why not me?” fundraiser initiated by the Mayor as a means of raising funds for Seers Farm, a NJ Sanctuary that provides temporary care for pets of domestic violence victims, for a NJ shelter for women of domestic violence to help add a pet friendly safe place and for Only Kindness Rescue to help care for pets that are left behind.

In the past I was on the Caldwell Mayors Legacy for Literacy Gala committee and I also volunteered at the Grover Cleveland Birthplace Fourth of July event.