Oakdale Joint Unified School Board will greet a new face at the next meeting on Monday, Dec. 14 as farmer Larry Betschart will be sworn in as the newly elected school board trustee.
Betschart defeated 16-year school board member Mike Tozzi with 58 percent of the vote in the Nov. 3 election. Tozzi secured 42 percent of the vote.
“Mike and I made a gentleman’s agreement early on,” the newly elected board member said about a low-key approach to the election, “not to go overboard on this and it was, what it was.”
Betschart has served on the Valley Home Joint Unified School Board for the past four years. His term with that board ends this December.
Betschart stated he has a daughter currently enrolled as a seventh grader at Oakdale Junior High and saw running for school board as a valuable way to be involved with her schooling.
“There’s a lot of interest for me with the new school farm,” the farmer said, “and I think I can help benefit or help out because I’m very passionate about that.”
Betschart is the owner and operator of Betschart Farms, growing almonds and walnuts. He shared he is equally encouraged by the strong presence and success of Oakdale’s Future Farmers of America program.
“Strong FFA chapters really show a strong school spirit,” he said. “I’m happy to be part of the team now and hope to be part of the future success of this district.”