NAME Liza Montelongo
OFFICE YOU SEEK Ysleta ISD Board of Trustee District 7
OCCUPATION Founder of My Scholarships El Paso an educational program that this year has three Gates Finalists, a Quest-Bridge winner and students will earn over $5 million in scholarships and college offers.
560 Hours of Continued Education in 3 years
National Association of Latino Elected Officials National Institute on Healthy Communities
Texas Institute for School Boards
NALEO National Institute on School Governance
Texas Association School Boards Legal Seminar Continued Education Hours
Educational Institute Center for Reform of School Systems
Alumni of the Disney Institute
University of Texas At El Paso 84-88
Graduate of Burger HS 84
Working towards Public Policy Certification 13
FAMILY “My sons have been my inspiration to guide other students and their parents through the college application process; in less then 4 years I have helped students earn more than $10.8 million for college!” Both sons graduated from Hanks in 2007. Daniel graduated from Marymount Manhattan and Michael from Berklee College of Music in 2011. Both live and work in NYC. My sister lives Germany but is returning to DC in June, my brother lives Florida and my younger brother lives in Dallas. My Mom and Dad live in El Paso. I was married for 23 years and all my nephews graduated from Del Valle.
NUMBER-ONE CAMPAIGN FOCUS: “Making Things Right!”
Number one focus is stopping wasteful spending and re-invest in the classroom.
WHAT SETS YOU APART FROM YOUR OPPONENTS?
My proven record of 20 years of advocacy, leadership and passion for doing the right thing for students, teachers, taxpayers and education is needed at this time. We need local policy leaders to lead the change for our children. My record for accountability and being a good steward of tax dollars is well documented.
I would have never voted to approve a contract to clean the superintendent’s pool with tax dollars or approve a private recording studio for the superintendent or $65,000 stage shaped as a ship when schools go without paper, classrooms have old and limited number of computers and some school went without heating.
RELEVANT EXPERIENCE THAT QUALIFIES YOU FOR THE POSITION YOU SEEK:
• 3 years as YISD Vice President School Board Member
• Serving on the State Agri-Life Urban Advisory Board part of TX A&M System
• 12 years as a Volunteer in Schools
• 20 years Advocating for Education
• 2 years as Vice President of School Board
• Employee at Ysleta ISD Construction Dept.
• Employee at Hanks HS Substitute Administrator and Information Clerk
• Served on the District Educational Improvement Committee
• Served on the Fine Arts, Science, Library, Security Systems and Custodian Standards Committees
• Served on the “Doing Business with the District” Committee
• Served on numerous Request for Qualifications Purchasing Committees
• Served on the Bond Oversight Committee
• Served on the School Health Advisory Committee
• Earned over 560 hours of Continued Education
• Member of College Board Advocacy Committee
• Founding Member of Women Uplifting Women
• Founder of Lupus Awareness Support Group
• Founder of Purple 4 May Luncheon of El Paso
• Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Member
• Member of Women Who Launch
• Former Community En Acc?on Member
• Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce Member
• Region 19 Legislative Advisory Committee Representative
• Association of Texas Professional Educators
• Texas Association of School Boards
• Co-Chair of National Youth Service Day
• Texas Coop Extension Urban Advisory Board
• Center for Reform of School Systems Alumni
• Hispanic Association of School Board Members
• Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities
• Raise Your Hands
• Mexican American School Board Association
• National Association of Latino Elected Officials
• National Hispanic Caucus
• Council of the Great City Schools
• Texas Public Education Reform Foundation Member
• Vista Hills Optimist Club
• Hispanic Women’s Network of Texas
As a Member of the Federal Relations Network I have worked on the following Issues:
• Pre-K - All children deserve a strong foundation. We need Universal Pre-K for all children.
• Academic Standards -Develop National Standards that provide rigor and produces a well-rounded individual ready for the 21st Century Challenges.
As member of the Legislative Advisory Committee for Region 19 I worked on...
• Top Ten Rule - Fought to Keep the Top Ten Rule in place for our high school students.
• Storm Water Fees - Testified in Austin in Support of School Districts HB that exempted districts from storm water Fees.
As a member of the YISD Board, I worked on..
• Transparency and fought the corruption.
• Ensuring Internal Auditor reported directly to Board
• Numerous Policy Implementations
• Addressing Counselor/Student Ratio
• Implementing Go Centers at ALL our high schools.
• Implementing Policy for Student Community Service
• Supporting that ALL students take SAT
• Implementing more PTA/PTO’s in our schools
• Supporting a new Career & Technology Program
• Removing Blank Checks for Superintendent
• Supporting Science Technology Engineering Programs
• Supporting Fine Arts
• Supporting SAT and College Readiness Programs
• Approval of new MCI Buses.
IF YOU HAD THE CHANCE TO REVOKE ONE RULE IN YOUR DISTRICT IMMEDIATELY UPON TAKING OFFICE, WHICH ONE WOULD IT BE?
• Getting rid of $100,000 Black Check from the superintendent -Policy CH
DESCRIBE A MOMENT THAT CHANGED YOUR LIFE:
Being diagnosed with lupus. I went eight years misdiagnosed and on December of 2010, I was told I what was wrong with my system which has brought much peace of mind. With proper medication, gluten-free diet, and exercise, I am now healthier and have it in control. When I learned that El Paso was the number city in the US where more women die from complications from lupus, I began the process to start a foundation that will help patients with autoimmune disorders through support and education.
Last year we had our first luncheon and had many governmental entities adopt resolutions recognizing May as Lupus Awareness Month. I look forward to one day El Paso being the number ONE city where women received support and are diagnosed early because they knew what to ask their doctors.
IN WHAT WAYS ARE EL PASO SCHOOLS ON THE RIGHT TRACK, AND IN WHAT WAYS DO THEY NEED TO CHANGE COURSE?
Teachers will continue to teach, support personnel will continue to bus our students, feed students, provide clean facilities and support schools even with turmoil and of lack of leadership.
• We must support and introduce legislation that requires all superintendents to have an exit audit and turned into TEA where a historical background could be requested by a school district school board for true background check.
• We must ensure that the internal auditor has proper tools and staff to ensure transparency and accountability.
• We must request disclosure from superintendents of prior vendor relationships.
• We must advocate for reform of educational systems and get rid of the “factory assembly” system.
• We provide strong Career and Technology program with a starting your own business component and with strong corporate and business partnerships.
• We must train teachers to use technology to engage students.
• We must work towards empowering parents and making them advocates for their children.
• We must stop the wasteful spending and re-invest in the classroom.
• We must open our campuses to the community again.
• We must prepare our students to master SAT/ACT so they can compete globally for full-rides and scholarship offers.
• We must work together with community college and UTEP and advocate that College 1 Math be provided to all seniors so they can have college credit and we can reduce remedial classes.
IF ELECTED, HOW WILL YOU BALANCE THE NEEDS OF FAMILY, YOUR CAREER AND YOUR OFFICE?
I am an “EMPTY-NESTER” and I own my business where I work afterschool and weekends so balance is simple. I want to dedicate many hours to improving our education system and build constituent relationships. Many talk about bringing in high paying wage jobs to El Paso but as long as our school systems fail to produce critical thinkers and college/ workforce ready students we will never have those jobs! We must work together to meet that need.
WHEN AND WHY DID YOU COME TO EL PASO (IF APPLICABLE)?
Born and raised in El Paso!
PLEASE INDICATE WHETHER YOU HAVE A WEBSITE, TWITTER OR FACEBOOK ACCOUNT:
FACEBOOK: Liza Montelongo Fan Page
OTHER CONTACT INFORMATION FOR VOTERS:
LinkedIn: Liza Montelongo