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2017-2018 School Board Election  

Meet the candidates for the Watervliet City School District Board of Education


Two seats on the Board of Education are up for election on Tuesday, May 16. Four candidates are vying for the two at-large seats. The two candidates who receive the highest number of votes will be elected to the board and will be sworn in during the July Board of Education meeting. Each candidate is elected to serve a three-year, unpaid term that will expire June 30, 2020. The candidates are listed in the order that their names will appear on the ballot.


picture of board candidateChristine Sutherland, of 1127 7th Avenue, Watervliet, is seeking a first term on the Board of Education. She has been a district resident for 37 years and is employed as an accounts receivable specialist for Rifenburg Construction, Inc., handling the daily billing and collections for the company and its divisions, as well as tracking the taxability and reporting for the companies and projects. In that role, she also processes the employee allowances, reimbursements and company credit cards. A graduate of Catholic Central High School, Ms. Sutherland has been involved in Watervliets junior varsity and varsity football programs and previously volunteered with the Pop Warner Football program. After undergoing a life-saving transfusion, she has donated blood regularly to the American Red Cross since 2000. During the past several years, Ms. Sutherland has participated in raising funds for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society as part of a team effort with co-workers and friends, and recently participated with a team in the American Cancer Society's Bark for Life event. She has two sons, Joseph Sutherland-Daniele and Anthony Sutherland-Daniele, a junior at Watervliet Jr./Sr. High School.

picture of board candidate S HoffmanSTEVEN HOFFMAN, of 1013 8th Avenue, Watervliet, is seeking a first term on the Board of Education. A district resident for the past 47 years, he is employed as a code enforcement officer for the city. Mr. Hoffman attended Watervliet High School, earned an Associates degree in Accounting and Business Administration from Albany Business College and is graduated from the Watervliet Arsenal Machinist Apprentice Program. He previously volunteered as a junior varsity and varsity baseball coach for Watervliet High School (2001-2004), served as coach, manager, and vice president of Watervliet Little League (1994-1999); coached Watervliet Pop Warner Football from 1996-98, serving as president from 1997-98; and is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the Watervliet Civic Center and is a past board president. Mr. Hoffman and his wife, Grace (WHS Class of 1976) have one son, Graig, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2010-14, and is a 2004 graduate of WHS, and HVCC (2008).

picture of board candidateSHAWN SMELTZER, of 2322 12th Avenue, Watervliet, is seeking a first term on the Board of Education. A district resident for 13 years, he is employed as a Community Relations Specialist for Fidelis Care. In this role, Mr. Smeltzer is responsible for business-to-business marketing and he meets with groups, organizations and community leaders to determine how Fidelis Care can assist them in their endeavors and individuals with health care coverage. A graduate of Devils Lake Central High School in North Dakota (ND), he earned a Bachelor's degree in Communications from Minot State University (ND). Mr. Smeltzer is a past member and served on the Board of Directors for the Albany Community Action Partnership, is a past member of Spring Youth Baseball in Troy, past president of the Head Start Policy Council in Albany County and a volunteer at South End Childrens Cafe in Albany. He and his wife, Kristin, have twin sons, Nathan and Evan, who attend Watervliet Jr./Sr. High School, and a daughter, Peytan, who attends Watervliet Elementary School.

picture of board candidate MB Whited

MARY BETH WHITED, of 1004 14the Street, Watervliet, is seeking a first term on the Board of Education. A district resident for 32 years, she is employed as a telecommunications tech for Verizon Communications. In that role, Mrs. Whited remotely tests and repairs T1 and T3 phone systems, and provides customer support. A graduate of Troy High School, she earned an Associates degree in early Childhood Education from HVCC in 1985, and Telecommunications in 2008. Mrs. Whited previously served as a member of the PTA, the Dads' Club, was a class advisor helper in 2005, a chaperone, and an academic probation monitor. She also was a statistician for Watervliet varsity football for 15 years. Mrs. Whited has been a community volunteer for Pop Warner Football, Watervliet Little League, Girl Scouts and the Watervliet Civic Center. She and her husband Darryl (WHS Class of 1980), have a daughter, Jessica, and a son, Darryl, both graduates of Watervliet High School.

Polls will be open from 11 a.m. through 8 p.m. on Tuesday, May 16 for the annual school budget vote and Board of Education election. The two polling sites are the Watervliet Elks Club at 501 4th Avenue, and Watervliet Elementary School at 2557 10th Avenue.