DEL NORTE— Three candidates are running the two open seats on the Del Norte School Board: Neal Walters, Laura Anzalone and Bridget Kreutzer. In addition, the board is currently in the midst of passing a bond issue that would help pay the remaining amount of funding for the purchase of a new school, which will also be on the November ballot.
A bond committee consisting of local Del Norte residents and business owners has been formed and a series of public meetings have taken place over the last several weeks to educate the public on the process and outcome of passing the bond issue.
Walters has served on the school board as president for the past few years and is re-running for his second term. The retired law enforcement official from Tulsa, Okla. had this to say, “Through the years I have had lots of experience dealing with large governmental budgets and issues, giving me the knowledge needed to help the school achieve their budgetary goals and help them through this bond issue.” Walters continued stating that his experience is what also helps him on the Rio Grande Hospital Board and the Rio Grande/Mineral County Health District boards.
Walter’s goals are to continue to aid the school in moving forward with the new school and to get the bond issue 3A passed this November. “I am retired and that allows me to have the time needed to dedicate myself to the board. I have connections throughout the community of Del Norte that will come in handy. This is about Del Norte, South Fork and the upper Rio Grande area. I hate to use the phrase, ‘Pay it forward,’ it gets used so much, but that is what I want to do. I want to see this town grow into its potential and pay it forward to future generations.”
Anzalone is new to the area, having moved here two years ago and is a mom to two children in the Del Norte School District. Prior to her stay-at-home status, Anzalone was an ecologist with the National Forest Service, working in both Idaho and a research center out of Ogden, Utah. With her experience as an ecologist, Anzalone developed an attention to detail, which she feels will play a huge role as a member of the school board. “One thing I have noticed is the need to get the public more involved with what is happening at our school. As a stay-at-home mom, I have an interest in what is happening at our school and the time to dedicate to the board,” said Anzalone.
Anzalone took a moment to explain that she feels bringing a fresh and different perspective to the board would benefit the community of Del Norte. “We have a huge opportunity here to see that our children get a school worthy of the community and I want to share my ideas with the community and the board,” stated Anzalone.
Local resident Kreutzer has been in the community of Del Norte her entire life, having left for school, only to return eight years ago. “I don’t have any personal goals for the school board, I just want to help in any way I can and be the fresh perspective that they need,” said Kreutzer. She co-owns the Three Barrel Brewing Company with her in-laws and husband Del Norte Chamber President Will Kreutzer.
Kreutzer has two boys in the Del Norte School District and as a mom, has a unique insight into how the school is currently operating. “This is a great time for the community and the school and I want to be a part of it. I want to see the town succeed and grow and the school is at the center of that,” continued Kreutzer.
The election will take place on Nov. 7 as a mail-in or drop-off ballot. For more information, please visit https://www.riograndecounty.org/departments/elected-officials/clerk/election-information.