Board Member - Term: 2013-2017
Harvey Kuffner of Carmel represents Trustee Area One, which consists mainly of New Monterey, Pacific Grove, Del Monte Forest, Carmel-by the-Sea, Carmel Valley, and Big Sur. Mr. Kuffner was first appointed to the Monterey County Board of Education in 1996 to fill a vacant position. Mr. Kuffner has brought a range of experience and community involvement to the County Board of Education. Along with his military service, he has served as Vice President and partner in a computer company, and also held managerial positions with the Internal Revenue Service for 19 years. Mr. Kuffner received a BA in Industrial Relations from San Jose State University and an MBA in Management from Fresno State University.
Mr. Kuffner has served as a Commissioner of the Community Action Partnership, and on the 1992 and 1995 Monterey County Civil Grand Juries. He currently serves on the Monterey County Children’s Council and Community Human Services Board.
Board Member - Term: 2015 - 2019
John McPherson represents Trustee Area 2, which extends from South Salinas to the City of Monterey, as well as mid-County including Chualar and Gonzales. Trustee Area Two encompasses all or major of eight different school districts. Mr. McPherson was elected to the Board of Education in November 2011. A 20-year Monterey County resident, he currently works for Organicgirl, LLC as Director of Customer Service. Previously he held positions in marketing, information services and operations for Household Credit Services.
In addition to his work on the Board of Education, Mr. McPherson is on the executive committee for the California County School Boards Association, has served as a delegate to the California School Boards Association Delegate Assembly, and is currently the President of the Oversight Board for the Sand City Redevelopment Successor Agency. He demonstrates his passion of young people through coaching youth basketball and volunteering with the Buena Vista 4H Club.
Also an author, Mr. McPherson has written a book on parenting titled “Ten Simple Rules for Being a Better Parent.”
A graduate of the University of Southern California in 1985 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, Mr. McPherson resides with his wife Christina and two children in Las Palmas.
President - Term: 2013-2017
Judy Pennycook represents the North Monterey County area of Trustee Area Three. Mrs. Pennycook was first elected to the Monterey County Board of Education in 2003. She brings a wide range of experience to the Board of Education in both education and legal. Mrs. Pennycook graduated from the University of California Irvine with a BA in Social Science, and obtained her Preliminary Teacher Credential from the California State University Northridge and Directorship of Early Childhood Certification from the University of California Los Angeles. Mrs. Pennycook also attended the Monterey College of Law and graduated from the California School Boards Association Masters in Boardsmanship Certification course.
Mrs. Pennycook has served as a member of numerous community groups including the 101 Bypass Executive Committee, AYSO Youth Soccer Executive Board, Reading is Fundamental Board of Directors and Restorative Justice Commission. In addition, she also served on the Monterey County Board of Supervisors and on the North Monterey County Unified School District Board of Trustees.
Board Member - Term: 2015 - 2019
Janet Wohlgemuth is the Trustee for Area 4, which encompasses the southeastern and southwestern parts of the city of Salinas. She was elected to the board in November 2015.
Janet Wohlgemuth was born and raised in Monterey County, attended local schools and received her degree in Fire Science from Hartnell Community College. For over 20 years, she has worked with young adults ages 18-25, for the California Conservation Corps, teaching emergency response such as fighting fires, floods, and earthquakes, and working outdoors to improve natural resources. She was awarded the Governor’s Safety Award in 2000.
Ms. Wohlgemuth has two children in public schools. Building a strong community is one of her biggest priorities. She is deeply invested in her community and has served as Vice President and Treasurer of the Laurel Wood School PTC Board, Continental Little League Board of Directors and Umpire, a 4H volunteer, Salinas Valley Model Railroad Museum docent, Salinas Rodeo volunteer, and a foster care parent.
Ronald J. Panziera
Board Member Term: 2015 - 2019
Ronald J. Panziera of Soledad represents Trustee Area Five on the Monterey County Board of Education, which includes the most southern section of the Salinas Valley including ten school districts from Soledad to Bradley. He was first appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board in 2006.
Mr. Panziera is a life-long resident of Monterey County. He is a partner in Boggiatto Produce and the Joe Panziera Farm.
Mr. Panziera is a 1968 graduate of Gonzales High School and attended Hartnell College before entering the United States Navy. Among Mr. Panziera’s other community involvements, he also is a member of the Soledad American Legion Post 32 after serving as Commander for the six years.
Vice-President - Term: 2013-2017
Mary Claypool, a prominent Seaside business leader, was appointed to fill the provisional vacancy in Board Trustee Area 6 at a special meeting of the Monterey County Board of Education on November 7, 2012. Trustee Area 6 is comprised mainly of the cities of Marina, Seaside and Sand City.
“Education is critical to the health of our nation, state and county. My wish is to ensure all students are offered equal access to an excellent education, and to keep the community informed and engaged. I am passionate about improving the quality and access of education to all students,” states Claypool.
Claypool has served on various parent-teacher associations, worked directly in classrooms, and currently serves as a member of the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District Bond Oversight Committee. Claypool has 42 years of experience working as a budget/management analyst for local government, including the City of Seaside and County of Monterey, and is well versed in developing and monitoring public agency budgets. She holds bachelor and master degrees from La Salle University.
Board Member - Term: 2013 - 2017
Sergio Alejo, Jr. represents Trustee Area Seven, which comprises East Salinas. He was first elected to the Monterey County Board of Education in November, 2013.
He was born and raised in Salinas. He attended Fremont Elementary, El Sausal Middle School, Everett Alvarez High School and will be attending Hartnell Community College in the spring of 2014. Alejo has worked as an event Coordinator/Promoter for the past several years and currently serves as a Board Member for Caminos del Arte, a local arts non-profit organization. Alejo is a father of three, two daughters and a son.