By SCOTT JACKSON
Courtney Perdios was appointed to the open seat Quincy School Committee Tuesday evening, besting out three other nominees for the position.
Perdios, who finished runner-up in the 2019 school board election, filled the seat left vacant by the departure of Anthony Andronico last month. Andronico left the school board after being appointed to the Ward 2 seat on the City Council vacated following Brad Croall’s resignation.
Mayor Thomas Koch, the chairman of the school board, swore Perdios into the seat Wednesday morning.
Perdios will serve the remainder of Andronico’s term, which expires at the end of the year. Perdios will be eligible to run for a full four-year term in November and previously told The Sun she would do so.
The School Committee and City Council met at a joint convention Tuesday inside Quincy High School to fill the open seat on the committee. Perdios received eight of fourteen votes on the first ballot, winning the spot. Ellen O’Donnell finished second with three votes, Elizabeth Speakman netted two votes and Liberty Schaaf garnered one vote.
Ward 4 Councillor Brian Palmucci nominated Perdios for the position during the joint convention. He called her a “tireless advocate in our community on various projects she has worked on and organizations.”
“She is certainly the type of person who, once she has something in her head, she will work at it and at it and at it,” Palmucci said. “While I may not always agree with every position she has, I have no doubt she will be a valuable member to the School Committee.”
Committee member Douglas Gutro seconded Perdios’ nomination, noting she has a decade of experience leading parent groups in the city, including the Clifford Marshall PTO and the City-Wide PTO. Perdios has remained involved in the community since the 2019 election, Gutro added.
“Despite Courtney’s loss at the ballot box, she did not retreat from her advocacy and her interest in [Quincy Public Schools],” he said, highlighting her service on the school system’s re-entry task force since last summer.
“Courtney has not only been a presence, but she has been a voice for parents.”
Palmucci and Gutro both voted for Perdios after nominations closed. Koch and school board member Frank Santoro voted for her as well, as did Andronico and fellow councillors Noel DiBona, Anne Mahoney and Charles Phelan Jr.
After the votes were in, Koch said he voted Perdios because she finished runner up in the last municipal election.
“Courtney has been very active,” he said. “She also has run for the office and came up just a little short, so I think out of fairness she deserves it even though I probably know a couple of the other candidates more closely.”
Councillors Ian Cain and William Harris, along with committee member Kathryn Hubley, voted for O’Donnell. Cain, who nominated O’Donnell for the seat, touted her background in finance and real estate as well as her service to the community.
“She brings a unique perspective as parent and enthusiast and person who has not only been involved in Quincy youth sports, but has also been taken part in many of the commissions, including the Community Preservation Committee,” Cain said.
Voting for Speakman were City Council President Nina Liang and committee member Emily Lebo. Speakman is the coordinator of domestic and gender-based violence prevention for the city of Cambridge, Lebo noted while nominating her for the post.
“Ms. Speakman has developed and implemented trauma-informed law enforcement training for the Cambridge police and their community partners and she has presented this program nationally as well,” Lebo said. “Liz’s work has also included support for equity and diversity initiatives in Cambridge and her home city of Quincy.”
Ward 1 Councillor David McCarthy cast the lone vote for Schaaf. In nominating her for the position, McCarthy said Schaaf formerly was the president of the Atherton Hough PTO.
“She is very active – very proactive – and knows the city inside and out,” McCarthy stated.