The resignations of David Rossi and Edward Wang created two vacancies on the body. From a pool of 20 prospective candidates, the board has named Ben Ovadia and Corrien Elmore Stratton.
By Matt Skoufalos | July 5, 2019
UPDATE: July 10, 2019, 3:30 p.m. — After a moderated panel discussion and closed-session interviews, the Cherry Hill Board of Education has appointed Ben Ovadia and Corrien Elmore Stratton to fill a pair of vacancies on its board.
Both will be installed pursuant to background checks. The board anticipates swearing in Ovadia and Elmore Stratton by the end of the summer.
Those openings were created by the resignations of board members David Rossi and Edward Wang on June 11 and 25, respectively.
Rossi had been elected to the body only last November; when he stepped aside, the board advertised the opportunity to fill his unexpired term, and 24 candidates applied for it. When Wang announced his intended departure too, the board elected to recruit for his post from that same pool of 20.
After its June 25 meeting, the board whittled the candidate pool down to four hopefuls in executive-session interviews: Rosy Arroyo, Emily Capella, Corrien Elmore Stratton, and Ben Ovadia.
- Arroyo, a married mother of two, is the Camden County Youth Service Commission administrator. In 2019, she was named one of the Camden County Martin Luther King, Jr. Medal of Freedom winners.
- Capella, who began her teaching career in 1977, is the former superintendent of schools at the Lenape Regional High School District and has been an interim superintendent at Rancocas Valley Regional School District, according to the Burlington County Times and Sun Newspapers.
- Elmore-Stratton is the Director of Youth Intervention for the Camden County Office of the Greater Philadelphia YMCA. She also chairs the publicity committee of the Cherry Hill African American Civic Association.
- Ovadia is a resource development manager at the Salvation Army Cherry Hill office. He and his family are avid domestic travelers, having penned a book on their 49-state tour of America.
All four will participate in a public information session at 5 p.m. July 9, during which each will have the opportunity to deliver opening and closing remarks and to answer interview questions from the governing body. The proceedings will be livestreamed by the district.
At the conclusion of its regular meeting, the board will choose two of the candidates to replace Rossi and Wang in an executive session. If they pass a criminal background check, they may be sworn into service as early August 27.
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