The Huntington UFSD Board of Education is comprised of seven resident volunteers.
The Huntington UFSD Board of Education is comprised of seven resident volunteers.

Huntington School Board Members Honored for Service

October 26, 2023

The seven volunteer members of the Huntington School Board were recognized for their service this past Monday night with a performance by third graders in the dual language program and a presentation of the work of eight spectacular high school photographers.

Trustees Xavier Palacios, Michelle Kustera, Christine Biernacki, Theresa Sullivan, Kelly Donovan, Bill Dwyer and Thomas Galvin were recognized. Their service to the community and commitment to the academic and co-curricular programs that are the hallmark of the district were saluted.

The Huntington trustees do not earn salaries or stipends. They don’t receive health insurance or retirement benefits. They are legally responsible for overseeing a budget of more than $146 million along with hundreds of full-time and part-time employees. It’s not an easy job.

Huntington third grade dual language students seranaded the Board of Education and administration 

The third grade dual language program students took the stage at Jack Abrams STEM Magnet School and were absolutely adorable, serenading the trustees. Parents of the youngsters packed the auditorium for the performance, which helped create a festive atmosphere.

Director of Fine and Performing Arts Brian Stellato followed with a presentation of the work of high school photographers extraordinaire Jack Semelsberger, Reese Rinaldi, Jack Ruthkowski, Talia Koas, Harry Cuadra, Amalia Heinz, Jada Joseph and Ruby Baliber.

Mr. Stellato profiled each of the photographers and described what makes them so special. The trustees will be presented at a later date with framed photographic prints as a token of appreciation for their service to the community.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul proclaimed School Board Recognition Week as a way of honoring the thousands of trustees who “continually strive for improvement, excellence and progress in education, recognizing that all children can be successful learners.” There are 689 pubic school districts and 37 Boards of Cooperative Education Services (BOCES). In all, there are 5,089 board of education seats in the state.

The New York State School Boards Association sponsors School Board Recognition Week to recognize school board members for their commitment to New York public school children.

“Recognizing school board member service should be a year-round endeavor, but designating one week to highlight these volunteers’ efforts ensures they receive some of the thanks they deserve,” according to the New York State School Boards Association.

School board members statewide collectively oversee nearly 2.25 million K-12 students and $83.5 billion in budgeted spending.

“School Board Recognition Week is an opportunity to raise community awareness and understanding about the crucial role school board members have within a school district,” according to NYSSBA.