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5 File for 2 Open Seats on Glendale School Board

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Campus safety and gang violence will be among the top issues in the race for two seats on the Glendale Board of Education, according to candidates who filed nomination petitions this week.

Five candidates are competing for the two seats that will open up when four-term incumbent Sharon Beauchamp and five-term incumbent Blanch Greenwood--neither of whom will seek reelection--leave office.

“The No. 1 priority is the safety and the security of the campuses,” said John Gantus, 47, a local attorney who has been active behind the scenes in local politics, but is making his first run for public office. “I want to be in contact with our (police) resource officers and see what they need in the way of further support.”

Also running are Peter Musurlian, an aide to U. S. Rep. Carlos J. Moorhead (R-Glendale); Pamela Ellis, mother of two students at Mark Keppel Elementary School and president of the PTSA; Al Forthmann, a retired teacher, and Lina May Harper.

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Musurlian and Forthmann previously have run unsuccessfully for the school board. Musurlian, who received about 4,700 votes in his 1989 election bid, said he also plans to focus on campus crime and safety.

“Over the past four years, metal detectors have been introduced on campus and the policy on expulsions has been strengthened,” Musurlian said. He said that if elected, he would propose a study on “the state of security” in Glendale schools to assess the problems posed by gangs and weapons on campus.

Ellis said she is the only candidate who has children enrolled in the district. She said she will run on “a platform of experience, dedication and a commitment to making the schools better.”

She added: “Glendale’s students, families and taxpayers deserve the best, and I am working to assure our schools achieve that goal.”

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Forthmann and Harper could not be reached Friday for comment.

All five candidates turned in their nomination petitions to the city clerk this week. To qualify for the April election ballot, each must have collected signatures of 500 registered voters.

City officials said the signatures will be verified by the county registrar’s office and candidates who have qualified for the ballot will be announced in the coming week.


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