Medina Board of Education elects a new president

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 2 July 2015 at 12:00 am

Wendi Pencille has been on the BOE for 5 years

Photos by Tom Rivers – Wendi Pencille was elected the new president of the Medina Board of Education during an organizational meeting on Wednesday.

MEDINA – The Board of Education has a new leader after Wendi Pencille was elected president on Wednesday.

Pencille has served five years on the board. She has been active in the community for many years, volunteering for three decades as a wildlife rehabilitator and leading the recent fight by Citizens for Shelby Preservation against a new quarry in Shelby near the Wildlife Refuge.

Pencille has two children in the school district and she said Medina has provided many opportunities for her sons, Noah, 15; and Jaden, 12.

The board picked her as its leader. She replaced Chris Keller, who served in the role the past 1 ½ years. Keller is a teacher at Albion and the newly elected union president for Albion teachers. He said he didn’t have the time to serve as both union and BOE presidents.

The Medina BOE is in good hands with Pencille serving as president, Keller said.

“She is Cornell educated and very personable,” Keller said. “She’ll be outstanding.”

Keller said it was an honor to serve as board president. He is especially grateful for the chance to hand his son Chris his high school diploma at last Friday’s commencement.

Wendi Pencille, owner and handler of Humphrey, poses with the trained therapy dog at the Medina school administration office in this file photo from March 2013. Humphrey, a 125-pound Landseer Newfoundland, has visited Medina classrooms. It’s another way Pencille has volunteered with the school district.

Pencille came on the Board of Education during a stressful time for the district. State aid cuts forced the board to eliminate about 30 positions and some programs her first year on the board.

The district is in a stronger financial position now, and has been making gains academically.

“I want to keep going in the direction where we’re going,” she said. “We’re really doing good things here and I’m proud of what Medina graduates are doing.”

Pencille works as a market development specialist for IBM in Williamsville.

The board re-elected David Sevenski as vice president and welcomed Brian Koch as a new board member. Koch works for Hewlett-Packard in sales. He has two kids in the school district.

Koch and Pencille both work out of the site owned by Ingram Micro in Williamsville, where several technology companies are based.

Pencille’s family attended Wednesday’s swearing in. Her mother, Janet Vullo, was the president of the Board of Education in Starpoint.

The board voted to change its monthly meeting schedule. Instead of meeting the second and fourth Tuesdays, the board will meet the first Tuesday and last Tuesday each month. That will allow Pencille to attend Shelby Town Board meetings on the second Tuesday each month.

The board on Wednesday also accepted the resignation of Tim Ames as director of facilities. He oversaw recent building and campus upgrades.

District Superintendent Jeff Evoy said Ames will be missed.

“I’d like to thank Tim for his many years of service to the Medina School District,” Evoy said.