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Background, experience

Doug Stien, 47, is from rural Newhall.

Doug is a lifelong member of the community and is living and farming on his family’s century farm. He and his wife, Debbie, are both Benton Community graduates. Doug attended Iowa State University. Debbie is a Reading Specialist and Reading Recovery teacher at Bowman Woods Elementary, in the Linn-Mar Community School District. They have three sons, who are Benton graduates. Jake and his wife Katie reside in Waukee. Jake is a graduate of ISU and works at John Deere in Urbandale. Ryan is a senior at ISU, majoring in Industrial Engineering with a minor in Engineering Marketing and Sales; and Luke is a sophomore at ISU, majoring in Agricultural Engineering.

Doug has been actively involved in his sons’ education at Benton Community.

He was a member of the Atkins PTA and volunteered many hours to coordinate the layout and the building of the playground and nature trail. Doug is also a current member of the Benton FFA Parent and Alumni Association. He has served on several district committees, including: Good Conduct Policy, Physical Plant & Equipment Levy (PPEL), and Infrastructure Committee. Doug is a member of St. John Lutheran Church in Newhall, where he serves as a head usher.

Role of School Board, future of Benton

“I believe that the most important role of a school board member is to insure that every child is privileged to the same educational opportunities (as well as extra curricular activities), and that all students are challenged and encourage to reach their full potential,” explains Stien. “In order to do this, teachers need a first class teaching environment so students can have hands-on learning opportunities that will prepare them for college or the work place. Teachers also need to have continued educational opportunities through staff development, courses, and conferences, so that our children are learning from the best teachers. The Benton faculty – teachers and administrators – are role models and it’s vital that our students see them as leaders in and out of the classroom.”

 “Another important role of a school board member is to be fiscally responsible,” says Stien. “We need to continue to keep our taxes low and to make sure all expenditures are in the best interest of our customers – the students and patrons. These are two important issues for me as a school board member.”

Doug says that this is an exciting time for the district with the much-needed additions to the Atkins and Keystone Elementary Schools, and the air conditioning to all elementary centers. This will improve the learning and teaching for everyone.

Stien said objectivity is one advantage he will bring to the Benton Community School Board, saying he has no conflict of interest, especially since his sons have graduated and he doesn’t have any family members who are employed by the district.

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UPDATED August 25, 2009 4:59 PM

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