Monroe County School Board member John Dick will seek a third term in District 4.
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Dick has lived in Marathon for 24 years. A self-described "fiscal conservative," Dick attended many school board meetings as a concerned citizen before he decided to seek election to the board.
He filed his paperwork on April 3 at the elections office in Marathon. At present, Dick is running unopposed for the seat, which encompasses Marathon, Islamorada and parts of Tavernier.
"I want to continue serving in order to continue with the improvements we have made in the quality of the education of our children," Dick said. "Now that the economy has improved, I want to continue with increasing the salary of our employees so that they can better afford to live here. Since I have been on the board, we have greatly improved the salary of our teachers and other employees, and have reduced the amount of administration in the district in order to get more funding to our teachers and other frontline employees."
Dick graduated from the New York City Technical College in 1966 with a degree in mechanical technology, and was drafted shortly thereafter by the U.S. Army. He spent two years in Vietnam before being honorably discharged.
Upon his return to the U.S., he owned and operated an auto repair shop in Brooklyn for decades, before selling his shop and moving to the Keys.
"I might have even done a little welding during that time," Dick said jokingly, in a reference to a recent debate with board colleague Ed Davidson of District 3.
A proud veteran, Dick currently serves as the commander of the Key West American Legion Arthur Sawyer Post 28, and was previously the commander of the Key Largo VFW Post 10211. He is a member of the Marathon Rotary Club, the Elks Lodge in Marathon and the Islamorada Moose Lodge.
He also serves on numerous volunteer boards throughout the county, such as the DUI Advisory Board, the Monroe County Coalition for A Safe and Drug Free Community, and the Miami/Dade Monroe County Disabled Transportation Board.
Dick is optimistic about the future of the school district.
"When I've gone out into the public getting my petitions signed to get on the ballot, I see people that I know, and others that I've never met, and by a wide, wide margin, they all seem to feel that the district is getting a lot better," Dick said. "These are all kinds of people. Years ago, I remember hearing about what a mess the district was in.
"Thankfully, those days are now over, and we're able to concentrate on improving the district for our children, and employees, in the future."