Incumbent Lisa Pardo is running against challenger Mike McCoy for the Grapevine-Colleyville ISD board of trustees Place 4 seat in the May 4 general election.
Community Impact Newspaper sent Pardo a series of questions about her candidacy. This article is part of ongoing May 4 election coverage and does not constitute an endorsement of the candidate. Pardo’s written responses, edited for publication style, are below.
Why did you decide to run for this office?
I have always believed in having a purpose in life that betters and benefits others. I am seeking re-election to continue that purpose. I have the honor to represent families with children, empty nesters, retirees and business owners. I would like the opportunity to continue representing all community members along with the opportunity to continue working on the district’s strategic plan known as “LEAD 2021”—Leading Excellence–Action Driven. LEAD 2021 affects every aspect of the district from student and teacher instruction to technology to facilities and operations and serves as the guiding light for all district decisions. I truly believe in promoting and fostering an educational system where all students and district employees are safe and secure.
What experience—professionally or politically—do you have that would prepare you for this position?
I feel my experience on the GCISD board of trustees since 2004 has prepared me for this position. I have held the position of president for three years, vice president four years and secretary one year. This along with yearly board training, continuing education classes and leadership training required by the state. I currently sit on and have sat on nonprofit boards and have owned and operated a successful restaurant within the last several years. I believe both my professional and political experiences give me the insight to understand the many diverse functions of our district, from the financial aspect to the education of our students.
What do you think is one of the biggest issues facing GCISD, and how do you plan to address it on the school board?
I believe the biggest issue facing GCISD is school finance, “Robin Hood” and the continued increase of our recapture payments. In 2015, GCISD paid $24.5 million to the state in recapture, $30.7 million in 2017, and the projected amount for 2019 is $53.7 million. These are school taxes paid by our neighbors to run our schools and pay our teachers, yet the state demands these payments. Needless to say, school finance in Texas is a complicated mess. As bad as this impacts our district, the state also continues to place mandates (new programs) on our district which many of them are not funded. We as a district, community and individually must continue to work with our elected officials and come up with a plan that allows GCISD to keep as much of our tax dollars as possible where we use them—in GCISD.
What else do you want voters to know about you?
I was born and raised in the metroplex. I raised my children here, volunteer here, my home is here and I worship at 121 Community Church. Our communities hold a very special place in my heart. I have watched Colleyville grow from a town with one blinking red light and one Burris grocery store to what it is today. The same is said of Grapevine. What once were horse pastures are now hotels and homes. Although my children have graduated and moved on, my husband and I have chosen to continue to live in and support our community. I have the desire to serve so that other families have the opportunity to experience the same great education that my children received here in GCISD. I see myself as a very approachable trustee and am always available for parents, teachers and business owners no matter the issue. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.