In this busy world we live in there are few people in society today who give of their time unselfishly, but recently John Boedeker and Mark Rhoades proved that theory wrong as they retired from the Elsberry School Board after spending 13 years and 12 years, respectively serving.
Boedeker considers one of his main priorities over the years was to keep hiring and maintaining great teachers and administrators and let them do their job.
Some items through the years that he deemed important was the passing of several no-tax bonds that allowed upgrades to the facilities and the construction of the bus barn, not to mention all the other things that the Elsberry School Board has done for the students and staff.
Rhoades echoed these sentiments, and added with the upgrades to the building with the last bond issue the buildings were made environmentally friendly, energy efficient and definitely a more comfortable learning environment for teachers and students.
Giving back to the school he was an alumnus of which was one of Rhoades main reasons to serve. He was also hoping to contribute his business experience as an executive at General Motors to make sound decisions for the school district.
Looking back on their years on the board, both men expressed how honored and blessed to have served with the current board members and some very good members of the community who were on previous boards. Such as Jim Mayes, Jim Heitman, Rob Guiness, Malaine Hagemeier, Alan Lagemann, Sean O’Brien, and of course past superintendent, Larry Flanagan.
Rhoades added, “at times we had some very tough decisions to make, but after a lot of questioning and reasoning, the strong board and administration we had made the best decision for the students and the staff.”
As far as his compensation for his service, Boedeker said, “It’s been a great experience seeing just how dedicated the teachers and administration are when it comes to students of this district. I’ve really enjoyed my time on the board. I’d like to say it was an honor to serve. “
Rhoades was considering running for re-election, until recent changes in his employment occurred. Retiring with GM after 39 years, he has decided to continue his career as Vice-President of Operations for North America TVS. Not only is he in charge of 11 plants nationwide, it also entails a lot of traveling, so he didn’t feel he could fulfill his position to the fullest extent.
“My time served has been priceless, we have accomplished a lot over the 12 years and I have been privileged to be on the board. I am very proud to be a part of that,” Rhoades said.
The proudest moment for both men though, has been the opportunity to hand their children, and other family members their high school diploma.
The three board seats will be filled at the April 4 election.