Demo Files To Take Back School Board Seat

BY BUDDY NEVINS

 

Democrats want their Broward School Board seat back.

Retired Miami Dade school principal Robin Behrman has opened a campaign for the countywide seat now held by Donna Korn, a Republican.

Korn hasn’t opened a campaign account yet.

 

Robin20Behrman

Robin Behrman

 

 

School Board campaigns are nominally non-partisan. But activists use advertising and word-of-mouth to let voters know the party ID of candidates.

If Korn runs and if history is any guide, she won’t be as vulnerable as many Democrats assume.  Last year she beat Democratic stalwart Franklin Sands, the former Florida House Democratic leader who was running on the same ballot as Barack Obama.

Behrman of Davie lost a three-way Democratic primary last year against Richard Stark for state House. She spent just over $112,000, of which $36,600 was her own.  Her husband is the head of the Florida Association of Community Health Centers and was labeled a “lobbyist” by opponents during last year’s campaign.

“We said that about him in the campaign,” concedes Barbara Miller, campaign manager for Stark.

But now Miller is very upbeat about Behrman and her potential: “I found that whenever she got up to speak, she was very passionate and knowledgeable about education.  I thought she was running for the wrong office last year. I told her she should run for School Board.”

Behrman, 59, has solid experience -– 30 years as a Miami-Dade teacher and principal, plus seven more years as a private school teacher and substitute.

That means she will be an advocate for the classroom and local schools, rather than a toady of the downtown crowd of  school bureaucrats.

Broward is a daunting place to run countywide. Its sprawling with lots of different constituencies and not a lot of money to reach them.

Money is hard to raise in a School Board race because since the downtown in construction and school spending, there is little benefit for insiders to give to Board campaigns.

“It is very difficult to communicate your message because there is not enough money,” said Miller, who has run School Board races. “It has sadly become a name game.”

Well, Behrman is a good name that could appeal to lots of folks.

Behrman plays down the party politics of running against Korn.

“I’ve got nothing against her,” she said. “I just feel I’ve got a lot to offer.”

Once voters read her resume, I believe they’ll agree.

 

 



11 Responses to “Demo Files To Take Back School Board Seat”

  1. Thomas A. Lukas says:

    People always say they want government to run like a business. Donna Korn is a businesswoman as a commercial real estate specialist which is the kind of experience needed on the School Board. It already has too many education and political people.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I’m a Democrat and retired teacher who voted for Ms. Korn because Mr. Sands was just another politician facing Term Limits and looking for a job. I think Ms. Korn has done good work, but I certainly will take a look at Ms. Behrman.

  3. Charlotte Greenbarg says:

    So is Barbara Miller now the campaign manager for Ms. Behrman? That might account for her change of mind.

    The problem with the district was indeed big donors and corrupt members. And the big donors are just around the corner, and will definitely push for a tax increase.

    But this district also needs board members who are comfortable with financial and business matters. If you have tuned in to some of the workshops lately, you’d have seen how tough questioning from Ms. Korn made the ineptitude of some staffers obvious.

    That being said, I’m very interested in learning more about Ms. Behrman’s background and experience, opinions on policy, fiscal matters and administration in the interests of being fair.

    Also in the interests of being fair, the political affiliation of a candidate for this position should have no bearing on anything.

    FROM BUDDY:

    A tax increase in the form of a huge bond issue.

  4. Answers that are needed says:

    When someone challanges an incumbent I always believe it is on the challenger to say why the incumbent should be fired and the challenger be hired.

    I agree with the posters above, Ms. Korn has brought a much needed business approach to the Board while never playing partisan politics.

    I hope Ms. Behrman can bring examples of the wrongs committed by Ms Korn and not just hope she can win because she is a Democrat or say Korn is bad because she was appointed by Rick Scott.

    I agree with Charlotte, Miller is sniffing around the BCSB again because she knows if the bond issue passes that there is going to be bucoo bucks for her developer friends. I wonder when Neil Sterling starts to pop up?

  5. The Critic says:

    I’m guessing if Barbara Miller was talking to Buddy it was because he called her, so I would hardly call that her sniffing around!

    Could it be that she was supporting Rick Stark when he ran, but thought Behrman had strong education credentials, and now Behrman is running for the school board so she thinks its a better fit for her?!? In addition to that, Behrman’s husband is a lobbyist in Tallahassee and has no work at the school board, so again the same issue from the legislative race doesn’t apply in this situation.

    I don’t know Robin Behrman but I know Barbara Miller and I know her to be a passionate and tireless advocate for the candidates and issues she believes in, and contrary to what you may think, she generally does it for little or no compensation.

    FROM BUDDY:

    I agree with this reader’s opinion of Barbara Miller. I have known Barbara for (Don’t yell at me for dating both of us, Barbara.) decades. As long as I can remember, Barbara has been dedicated to finding and electing qualified candidates. She has turned down candidates as clients she felt were not fit for office.

    I believe that Barbara Miller is exactly what this reader wrote: “A passionate and tireless advocate for the candidates and issues she believes in.”

  6. George says:

    Judy Stern is preying on Runcie for the bond, not Barbara Miller. Ask anyone that sees her in public. And we all know she was with Donna Korn last time around. So don’t pull that card about Miller and Berman. I just don’t understand how Berman can use someone that put those disgusting mail pieces out about her last go round just so her Republican Stark could win.

  7. Kevin Tynan says:

    Buddy it is not any party’s school board seat!!! it is the people’s seat. The education of our children should be nonpartisan. That said I understand I fully understand the partisan nature of Broward County elections and the numbers at play. However, Donna Korn has done an excellent job on the Board and has proven to be a tough campaigner in holding her seat against a very partisan candidate, who was well funded and had the registration edge. I do not see this candidate who could not win a primary election in a small district as having any type of edge.
    Lastly, a tax increase to throw more money at a problem is never the solution.

  8. Stern about town says:

    Saw stern at broward days showing runcie a bunch of paperwork about the bond issue. Unlike others she can bring her elected official cronies to back it, perry, gibbons, Hazelle, Eggelletion, tim ryan, Lamar fisher, Neal dejesus, Lamberti and LaMarca, Lois Wexler and Ritter to name a few.

  9. vangork says:

    i look forward to helping korn lose…i’m in system and involved with btu .

  10. @ Vangork says:

    I am sure that you would like to wipe out the entire board with the exception of the union hack, Nora Rupert. When the unions have so badly gotten in the way that the entire district is taken over by for profit charter schools we will have idiots like you to thank.
    Whaaa! I can’t teacher six hours a day. I might be tired from an honest days work. Whaaaa!

  11. If it ain't broke don't fix it says:

    Totally agree with the first poster. What the Board DOESN”T need is more educators. What the Board DOES need is more professionals with business experience, like Donna has.

    Also, “Behrman is a good name that could appeal to lots of folks”? If that’s the euphemism I think it is, Korn is also a good name that will appeal to lots of folks, if you know what I mean (wink, wink).

    Also totally agree with Kevin Tynan. Korn’s opponent made party affiliation a focus of his mail pieces, which was not only unethical but really disgusting to me, and I belong to the party that her opponent does. School board races are non-partisan, and candidates that play the party card should not be on the ticket.

    I am a Democrat who proudly supported Donna the first time she ran (against Bev Gallagher — doesn’t everyone wish they voted for Donna now?!) and also supported her in her most recent campaign. I trust the voters will support her again, as she has done a good job, and there is no reason to vote her out.

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