A graduate of Simi Valley High School, West Ventura County has been Deborah’s home, since she and her husband, Jeff, moved to Oxnard in 1994. Deborah is a graduate of CSUN and Loyola Law School, class of 1991, attending at night in downtown LA while working a full time job with CIGNA/INA. Together they raised two daughters, both graduates of Ventura High School.
As the daughter of a PTA President, Deborah followed in her mother’s footsteps becoming involved in PTA when her children entered elementary school. Deborah embodies the PTA motto, every child, one voice. She possesses the industriousness of a former PTA President of the Oxnard Council of PTAs and Anacapa MS PTO, the passion of a parent of children with exceptional needs, and the unique skill set of an attorney capable of doing the deep policy work needed to put students first. She realizes that teachers are the voices of their students, and with professional development and collaboration with parents, collectively, they can empower each student to reach their own potential. Deborah sees that without systemic policies, oversight, review and inquiry of existing policies and procedures, and finally without their uniform implementation, educational equity will remain an illusion, not a reality.
Incorporating her extensive community leadership experiences in Oxnard School District and VUSD, Ventura County 4-H, Girl Scouts of the Central Coast, Channel Islands Ice Center, among others, Deborah brings years of youth mentorship, service learning and more than a decade of fundraising experience to the table. Deborah understands that the school board is the “what”, and the superintendent is the “how”, and it is only through collaborative governance that true community representation is accomplished.
Change is hard work, and unpopular, not to mention time consuming, but ultimately the only way to implement consistent policies and procedures is to honestly look at the District’s past policies of less than uniform adherence to important laws and dictates. Providing educational equity means acknowledging past failures inherent in existing policies and bias, so that each student actually has access to all of the outstanding choices and unique educational programs the District has to offer. Deborah has been a tireless advocate for all students, with an emphasis on underserved diverse student groups, including special education students, English language learners, and those of diverse races and cultures.
While the move to district elections within the City of Ventura and the school district will not entirely eliminate politically connected candidates endorsing each other, it is now possible for candidates like Deborah to campaign without large campaign budgets and political ties. Deborah’s platform is full of fresh ideas and political truths. The District is at a crossroads, the District knows this and in the wake of declining enrollment is rebranding itself. However, without taking an honest look at areas that need improvement and finding constructive ways to improve its educational product and delivery system the District cannot realistically begin to meet the needs of its diverse student population – several of which are clearly underserved based on cultural marginalization, as documented by state test results available on the CDE Dashboard.
Stakeholders of VUSD need Deborah. Follow Deborah on Facebook at deborah4vusd4.