Declaring his personal “responsibility to step up and make a difference,” Phil Chan – a seventeen-year resident of San Marino – has told The Tribune of his intention to seek one of three seats on the San Marino School Board that will be contested at the November, 2013 election.
“In our community, there is nothing more important than our children and their education,” Chan said yesterday. “I think I can make a positive impact.”
Chan and his wife, Pat, have two children in the San Marino Unified School District; Michael, who will be a freshman and Jeffrey, who will soon begin his junior year, both at San Marino High School.
A graduate of the University of Washington with a Masters Degree from USC, Chan has served as a Trustee of the San Marino Schools Foundation and was on the ground floor of the San Marino Community Athletics Association – SMCAA – and has been involved in the football and baseball booster clubs at San Marino High School. Previously, he served as a Cub and Boy Scout leader, most recently with San Marino Troop 355.
The Tribune frequently quips that the highest-ranking official in San Marino is the Little League President – Chan served in that role for the 2012 season and mentioned that some of the seeds for his school board campaign were sown during that experience.
“Some people in the community have mentioned it to me, possibly in a joking manner and mostly while I was serving as Little League President, but this is something I have been thinking about for quite some time. I have two children in the school district and they have had such a wonderful educational experience, I would like to see that every child in the community has a similar experience.”
Chan grew up in Seattle and moved to Southern California after graduating from UW, working for Price, Waterhouse, Cooper while earning his Masters Degree in Business from USC. He owns his own company, is an entrepreneur, and develops businesses in the fields of electronics and real estate.
“With my background in finance and accounting, I feel I would be an asset to the district considering all the state funding and general budget issues we will be facing,” Chan said. “As we all know, the schools are San Marino’s most valuable asset and I want to do all I can to help preserve them.”
Three of the five seats on the San Marino School Board will be contested at the Tuesday, November 5 election. Board members Nam Jack and current board President Joseph Chang have told The Tribune they intend to pull papers when the filing period opens on July 15. Board member Jeng Yen announced at the May 28 meeting that he will not defend his seat in November. San Marino resident Shelley Ryan has also told The Tribune she intends to file election papers.
School board members Lisa Link and Chris Norgaard have two more years remaining on their respective terms. The filing period for potential candidates closes on August 9.
“Not this time,” Scott Hu said yesterday when asked if he will seek a school board seat. Hu was a candidate two years ago and his name has been frequently mentioned during discussions of the 2013 ballot.
“I am honored that people have mentioned my name, but I am not running this year. I enjoy my experience with the Rotary Club!”
Hu also said “[the candidates] are all fine, dedicated people. It is good for our school district to have so many people involved.”
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