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ABC School Board Selects Hawaiian Gardens Native Olga Rios as President

Sending the City Clerk, the historic appointment is snubbed by Hawaiian Gardens Mayor Myra Maravilla and City Council.

BY BRIAN HEWS

The ABC Unified School District held their annual Reorganization this past Tuesday December 3, selecting Olga Rios as President. 

The ABC Unified School District is known throughout the State of California as a leader in educational planning and innovation and this is in large part to the exceptional leadership on the board of trustees. 

Rios is a local product, growing up Hawaiian Gardens, attending Hawaiian Elementary and Fedde Middle School, graduating from Artesia High School.  She received her Bachelor’s degree from Cal State Long Beach; a masters Degree from Harvard University and most recently a Doctorate Degree from USC’s Educational Leadership Program. 

Leticia Mendoza was voted in as Vice President of the Board. A lifelong educator and mother of four, she has been involved as a parent and volunteer in the district for many years. She is a second generation educator and has been a teacher for 18 years.

Soo Yoo was selected Clerk of the Board.

Out-going President Ernie Nishii was honored with Certificates of Recognition from the offices of Congresswoman Linda Sanchez, Senator Bob Archuleta and Assemblymember Cristina Garcia. 

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THANK YOU: Ernie Nishii (center) accepts a plaque from Dr. Mary Sieu and the ABC School Board. Rios was selected president, Leticia Mendoza selected Vice President.

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Representatives from each of the cities served by the ABC schools also presented certificates of gratitude to Nishii. 

Artesia City Councilman Ali Taj, Cerritos Mayor Naresh Solanki and Mayor pro tem Frank Yokoyama; Lakewood Vice Mayor Jeff Wood and Cerritos College Trustee Shin Liu all thanked Nishii for his tireless efforts and continued support of the school district, their cities and students.

Absent from the event was all elected officials from Hawaiian Gardens, with the City, in an unusual move, sending City Clerk Lucie Columbo to give Nishii a certificate from the City.

Emails into Hawaiian Gardens Mayor Myra Maravilla and the remaining council as to why they did not show up to honor Nishii and Rios went unanswered.

A video compilation of Nishii’s accomplishments was shown with Nishii commenting, “It has certainly been a great year. I have never learned so much, so fast in all my life. We stand on the back of folks like Maynard Law, and because of his efforts all of our schools will have science buildings. We have great sports, and musical programs. We had two schools win blue ribbon awards, and we are all part of this success.” 

Superintendent Dr. Mary Sieu added,” Mr. Nishii has been an invaluable member of our board of education and the communities that we serve. He has accomplished many great things this year and he has been everywhere in the schools, our communities and special city events. We thank him.”

One Hawaiian Gardens resident who did not want to be identified was incensed that no elected officials from his City showed up.

“The first ever ABC School Board President from Hawaiian Gardens and Mayor Maravilla and her group of cronies don’t even show up? How disgraceful. Not only is she the first president, Ms. Rios is the first woman president from our City. Mayor Maravilla champions herself as a #Metoo, hanging out with Cristina Garcia, but she is really just #allaboutme. And how about that snub of Nishii, he was the most visible president we ever had, and they don’t show up for him either? And to add insult salt to the wound, they send the City Clerk Lucie Columbo to the reorganization, several people here told me they had never seen that and were very insulted.”

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One Response to ABC School Board Selects Hawaiian Gardens Native Olga Rios as President

  1. New Voting Requirements

    December 10, 2019 at 1:16 pm

    Happy ABCUSD was divided in to districts, as this is the positive results from the new districts. There still is a big difference between the schools campuses in HG, compared to Cerritos, noticed this, when took a tour of some of the campuses prior to BB Mello Roos Bond.

    Really wondering if the ABCUSD Trustees would be better off, if candidates from outside the district lines, should vy for trustee elections? Poss. could get better qualified Corporate Leaders, compared to today architecture voting requirements. Housing elements is better outside ABCUSD for candidates vying for offices.

    Remember, back in the 70’s, staff had to live within the district, proposition/measure passed, allowing staff to live outside the district they were employed under. Now we have much better staff working in the district and cityhall.

    Commissioners are not allowed to serve on boards and live outside the city or districts.