John B. Grant said his first three years on the Board of Education went by rather quickly, and now that he's found his footing he isn't ready to give it up yet.
Grant, the current vice president, is seeking re-election on May 15. Dennis Donatuti is his challenger for the one seat.
A married father of two, Grant said he has found a way he feels he can best serve the community in which he was born and raised.
He is a graduate of the Springs School and a member of the East Hampton High School class of 1987. He studied business at the University of Richmond.
He is an owner in his family business, . The job provides him with some flexibility, which helpful when it comes to serving on the school board.
He found there was a bit of a learning curve, particularly when it came to the budget process. This year, he thinks the board has done the best job to date of being open with the community about the financial issues that face the district. "I'm exposed to the tax consequences, just like anyone else," he said, noting that he is always looking for ways the district can be more efficient.
His children, Marketa, 11, and Morgan, 9, are students at the school. He is a supporter of the Spanish program in the elementary school, as he sees first hand the benefits of being multilingual. His wife, Irena Grant, is from the Czech-Republic and his children are bilingual.
Communication with the has also improved immensely, he said. "That didn't happen automatically. We had to work at it," he said, crediting the entire board. During his first term, for the high school students.
But, the challenges are far from over. In the next three years, Grant said the board will be negotiating with four different bargaining units; the teachers, custodians, teacher assistants, and bus drivers. School board members will also have to take on new mandated-teacher evaluations, and continue to battle with the state mandated two percent tax levy increase cap.
He said he feels it will be helpful to keep the continuity of the board.
"When people look at my work on this board . . . even if they don't agree me . . . I think they'll find I've been very open and very fair," Grant said. "I really look forward to another term."
The takes place in Springs on May 15, at the school gym, between 1 and 9 p.m.