Linder: Residents need voice

Fair week is the unofficial start of another season campaigning for November elections. Steve Linder, first-time candidate for Norwalk school board, is taking advantage of the crowds at the fair by showing up as often as possible in his campaign shirt to earn name recognition.
Norwalk Reflector Staff
Jul 25, 2010


Fair week is the unofficial start of another season campaigning for November elections.

Steve Linder, first-time candidate for Norwalk school board, is taking advantage of the crowds at the fair by showing up as often as possible in his campaign shirt to earn name recognition.

"We've had a lot of people come up to us and wish us well," Linder said. "It's been a very positive experience."

Linder, who is a superintendent for the bridge division of Kokosing Companies, Inc., is a graduate of Norwalk schools. His two children Michael, 22, and Melissa, 20 are also NHS graduates.

As he campaigns, Linder has one main message he will be a voice for residents if elected to the school board. "In the past four years I've been to several school board meetings with issues of my own," he said. "In my opinion, the majority of the school board has a motto to ignore people and their problems until they go away."

Linder declined to rehash any old issues, but said he believes residents deserve the chance to have their views considered fully by board members.

"Rules in our education system are not applied to everyone equally and communication in our district is horrible," Linder said. "That's why some issues have come up horrible communication."

Linder said he would work to improve communication between administrators, teachers and residents and would give all residents' a chance to air their opinions. "I want to give the school board back to the community," he said.

The candidate also said he thinks district employees are reluctant to go to the board with concerns and problems because they are afraid their jobs will be in jeopardy. "Employees shouldn't be afraid to be heard," he said. "I want them to come to me. I want to look at what's behind the problems."

His wife, Sharon, works for the school district as a secretary at Main Street School.

Linder still is collecting signatures of registered voters on petitions so his name will be included on the November ballot. Incumbents John Lendrum and Michael Grose, along with newcomer Pat Saunders, also have taken out petitions for the two open seats on the school board.

Petitions are due in to the board of elections by Thursday. The top two vote-getters will earn seats on the board.

As for his campaign so far, Linder said he thinks it is going well. "I've had a lot of support," he said. "I'm really excited about doing this."

Steve and Sharon will show up with supporters for the rest of the fair in their campaign shirts. "It's just like a moving sign," he said.


Keeping in focu...

I agree with earlier comments about Lendrum and Grose (and whoever else decides to run) getting equal front page space to promote their candidacy. Change is not a dirty word, but only when it is done with good intentions. We need to change the board members who have axes to grind (re:Broz), not add to them! Those of you wanting a change on the board should think long and hard before voting in a candidate with ulterior motives, and who are already less than truthful when speaking in public. Why hasn't anyone question WHEN the transcripts were requested? I heard from a Linder family member that they were requested right before the deadline. Did we ever hear that from Steve or Sharon in a meeting or in the media? No. And if the school is riddled with administrative bullies, why didn't we hear about it from any of them? Because they AREN'T bullies, that's why. Because they, unlike Steve and Sharon, do not want to embarrass their daughter by dragging this out over an absurdly long period of time. The majority of in this matter fault lies with the Linder family, not the school administration. The board memebers get paid very little for the amount of time and bs they have to put up with. I do not believe for one minute that any of them are afraid of Bob or Wayne. I believe they are doing the best they can with difficult situations. If anyone wants such a thankless position, they should run because they care about the kids, not because they are upset. And as for you, "not a bully", your comments to others who are posting their opinions would make it seem that you are, indeed, a bit of a bully!

re: not a bully...

My info is correct! Sharon Linder started by working in the guidance office at NHS, before her transfer to Main St.
She knows how things worked in that office, and she knows people that work there.
And who said anything about power or control? Where in the world did you get that? It's not about her having power, it's about picking up the phone, and calling on behalf of her daughter, once it was realized there could be a potential problem with the transcript. Most parents would do that for their kids.
Notice how the Linders aren't complaining about anyone in the guidance office, only Duncan? Hmmmm....There's people there that could've helped them. Could it be that Mrs. Linder want any of her friends in that office to get in trouble?
While more has come out here about the transcript problem, there's still more. Actually, many people know, but it just hasn't been put in print yet.
My only problem with Mr. Linder running is the fact that he's obviously got an axe to grind with certain people, while carrying the torch for his wife.
If he wins election, it'll be interesting to see what happens. Again, I refer to a similar situation involving a board member named Linder in Bellevue.
Ask people there how happy they are.

not a bully (An...

There are so many "good ole boys" in this town. They stick together and it's hard to make any positive changes because of them. They want to run everything their way. In the end, it's sad for the kids in our school system. At a young age they quickly learn that it's all about who you are. Such a negative attitude has prevailed in this town for a very long time. Go to a sporting event in another school district and see the school spirit that is displayed. Then, go to a Norwalk sporting event. It's pretty sad. Why is this? Let's try to change it. Having an opinion does not make a person a bully. Last I knew freedom of speech was allowed- even in Norwalk.

re: not a bully...

You're right, having an opinion doesn't make a person a bully. When a person runs for a public office to get revenge on certain people, that's being (or trying to be) a bully.
And last I checked, you're expressing your opinion, and so am I. Seems freedom of speech is just fine.
We'll see how it goes in November. If Mr. Linder wins a seat, it won't take long to learn his true motive.

not a bully (An...

A lot of great changes have come about in our country because of people with an "axe to grind". Otherwise, people tend not to get involved.

re: not a bully...

Whatever Sharon...So you admit there's an axe to grind?

not a bully (An...

Settle down Bob!

Agree with Keep...

Expressing an opinion does not make someone a bully. However, calling "Hidden agenda" Bob Duncan and "Objectivity" Wayne Babcanec because of their comments is acting like a bully in this anonymous forum. So what if it IS them? They have as much right to air their opinion as anyone else. My opinion is that we, as voters, should be able to make an informed decision when going to the polls. I've read where some folks know the "truth" but aren't sharing it to spare the Linder's daughter. I think we deserve to know the truth. Where else are we going to get it? Obviously not from Linder. He and his wife don't want us knowing the truth. Folks unhappy with the current administration like "not a bully" might not support them that way. We aren't going to get the truth from the paper, either. Is the Reflector investigating these issues, or are they just quoting what's being said and slapping it on the front page?


First of all, I do agree with one of Linder's statements that the staff is afraid to come forward for fear of retaliation. I'm so paranoid I'm writing this from a friend's computer......I have many thoughts, starting with LENDRUM FAN CLUB PRESIDENT...If you are his fan, he doesn't need ememies. John is nice guy and would not resort to smear tatics and if you are going to name drop, you would be better to mention Jordy Horowittz than Steve Gray. We certainly miss Jordy, but of course he was gotten rid of because he wouldn't play Bob's son at QB his freshman year. Even though Jordy was looking out for the best interest of the team and Clay's safety. Gray on the other hand has told us, "I learned a long time ago to play the principal's kid." We have all witnessed the special treatment Gray has gotten since he's been here. It will be interesting to see how he's treated this year since his usefulness is now over with. Have arrangements been made for Gray's daughter to start varsity this year?...RE:NOT A BULLY...You're right, Bob is not a bully. He is a dictator! He has abused his power for way too long. As with Napoleon, Hitler and Mussolini he reign is about over. The funny part is that Bob is now grasping at straws to keep his job. Anytime there has been anything negative in the paper, he has brought it on himself. Nobody chewed tobacco for him, he is the one who failed to have fire drills (even though this information was brought to the attention of the community a year prior), no one else falsified information to the state fire marshall. Bob will lie to your face rather than tell the truth. I read Linder's letter to the editor and spoke with Julia myself. Sharon requested a transcript and advised Stacy what she wanted it for and when it was needed by. She followed up a few weeks later with Julia and Sharon was told the records wouldn't be back in time. What RE:NOT A BULLY has left out of his comment is that Bob told Stacy and Julia the records were out of the building and would not be available. Even though he knew a transcript could be gotten. This is where the "horrible communication" comes in, he had information he did not share. Sorry Bob, you really did drop the ball on this one. As with everything, you have done no wrong and will always blame someone else. Remember, we were even told by the "Teacher's at Work" committee that you do not communicate well with the staff. The only intelligent quotes you have come via Wayne. I hope at the next inservice we can have the physics teacher show us all how a set of gym doors can set off a fire alarm.
PARADY you forgot to mention Mike Grose. I'm sure he feels left out. We all like Mike and have been disappointed in how he has represented the staff. I would like to vote for him again if he will do what's best for the staff, remember how because of Bob Mike lost the AD job and why Chris left the system. I would think by now that it must be getting old for Wayne to keep covering up for Bob. I do agree with WAKE UP that we need to hire from outside of the system and if you added 20 years to your statement you could be talking about Gray. HISTORY LESSON you mention 10 Linder names on that petition, I thought I remember reading in the paper over 120 names, or are those all second cousins. Final thought it is in true Bob Duncan fashion to take credit for test scores being up and when they were down in the past it was the teacher's fault. You don't have to like someone to respect them and visa versa, unfortunately Bob, we neither like you or respect you.

wake up (Anonymous)

I certainly was not trying to throw any single person under the bus. That is why I refrained from using anybody's name. I was simply using this as an example of the changes needed in our school system. This school system needs a major shake up. There are just too many conflicts of interest happening, nepotism and over inflated egos causing problems. I'm not sure if Mr. Linder is the right person to do the shaking since he has a possible axe to grind but any change that comes out of it is welcome in my book. One single person on the school board will never be successful in making any changes as long as the 'good ole boys network' continues between the board, super's office and the teacher's union. If afraid that any person that decides to run for the school board that has the intentions of pushing for changes will instantly be labeled a "Mr. Linder". There are many people in our school system that are just lingering around collecting their checks at the public's expense and they don't want to see change. Last thing, I agree that Mr. Allen had to be the best teacher I ever had during my 4 years at Norwalk High.

Keeping in Focu...

True to my chosen name, can we get back to the topic: Steve Linder running for School Board? The school Baord does not run the day to day business of the system. Name a school system that does not have a teacher or 2 that sits back and coasts to retirement. Name a school system that doesn't have a staff member who is primarily a coach and a teacher second. This forum is supposed to be about the article above. Let's keep it in focus!


I won't jump into this mess, but I hope there's some sort of debate or forum where each of the people running can and will speak for themselves.
That includes Mr. Linder, Mr. Lendrum, Mr. Grose and Mr. Saunders.
Until then, good luck to all, and may the best two win.

Linders are not...

Sharon does not know the meaning of ethical and confidential. When my son went to NHS, not that many years ago, when Sharon was the secretary, not that many years ago, she was blabbing about among other things, kids' scores on ACT tests. Here is a fact: Sharon worked in the guidance office just a few short years ago from 2002 through 2004. She DOES or should have known the procedure to get a transcript if the records were out of the building. It is common practice for any good business to digitize their records for storage purposes. If Sharon would have went to Mr. Duncan when she reached a road block with the guidance office, all of this could have been avoided. By the way, isn't Melissa over 18? Should she not be requesting her own transcripts? By law, Sharon should not even be getting ahold of a transcript for her daughter, unless it's from her daughter.

This mess is not about Mr. Linder wanting to be heard. He wants his way and most educated people can see right through it.

And as far as people being "scared" of the bullies - give me a break. Please make yourself known at the next board meeting. Otherwise, SHUT UP! and Grow UP! Where does Jerry Moore fit into all this??? Am sure he's somewhere lurking!

Losing Focus......

To all of you who think members of the administration are bullies: two things; a)Last I know we all have free will to work anywhere we want - go someplace else - - of course, Norwalk is about the only district that hired this year, huh? - I read about MANY layoffs... hmmmm b) Maybe YOU PERCEIVE what they do as bullying. I perceive them as the guys who deal with every situation and crisis and still constantly have to stand there and take it - whatever IT is from all of you "I'm a taxpayer" people. There are such things as policies - that's what the Board makes, policies - the "bullies" are the ones WHO ENFORCE THE POLICIES - if that makes them bullies, perhaps you should seek to change policies, not Board Members!

How ironic! (An...

"Employees shouldn't be afraid to be heard," he said. "I want them to come to me. I want to look at what's behind the problems." (How ironic the next sentence in this article begins with "His wife"!) "His wife, Sharon, works for the school district as a secretary at Main Street School." and how true...indeed she is what's behind the problems!

They're all the...

Linder wanted to get rid of a coach and Duncan DID get rid of a coach. Linder has great kids and Duncan has great kids. Linder wants to get rid of Duncan and Duncan has gotten rid of how many teachers? See, they're all the same. How about this for a solution...we all go to the voting polls and if Linder wins, Duncan takes out a full page ad in the Reflector that says, "I QUIT!" If Linder loses, he takes out a full page ad that says, "DUNCAN IS THE GREATEST PRINCIPAL EVER!" and they never speak ill of each other again.

I like Steve! (...

We use to call him 'Dude' in school! Nice guy! He's got my vote! Good luck, Dude!

I'd call him (A...

Listening to him talk and reading his letters to the editor, I bet you guys never called him 'scholar.'


As a fellow teacher at NHS, I find my colleague's comments interesting. Based on the number here that run around drinking the Broz kool-aid, I can narrow the candidates down to just a few. I think it's unfair to take shots at Bob's son and act like his dad being principal was the only reason he got playing time. Come on, the kid just left to play baseball on a scholarship. I think his athletic ability had more to do with his playing time than his dad ever did. Also funny to find you sticking up for Sharon Linder. I don't recall all that many people liking or respecting her when she was here. As someone else mentioned, you had to know it was common knowledge that she used that position to get all the dirt and gossip on the kids through access to their records. Calling Bob a dictator is humorous as well. He does his job and he's more of a manager than a leader but the school has been safe and the scores have helped carry the district during his watch. It's easy to say he doesn't have anything to do with the scores and he shouldn't take credit for it but you know that would be one of the first things people would be using to call for his head if they weren't as high as they are. I'm sure you're a teacher here who has a major impact on test scores anyway, right? And you probably want a boss that's more of a friend. He's a principal for God's sake. He makes decisions that people are going to disagree with. It comes with the territory and if you can't understand that, than you'd probably be the same type of negative, complain in the teacher's lounge type of person no matter who was in charge. You actually remind me a lot of Jerry Moore. I just wish you'd come out of the closet so I could steer my kids away from the negativity obviously spewing from your classroom.

Re: Re NHS teac...

Well put. Your comments make the most sense here.

i've gotta voic...

and it screams WWII FTMFW!!!

hearts (Anonymous)

Do you have a good heart?Are you upset about what vic, the football player did? If so please log onto send out an e-mail to Mr.Roger Goodell at the NFL & let him know.They need to ammend their contracts;as to not conspire to violate the rules.They need stricter guidelines as to not abuse people, animals& so on.Afterall ,they are in the public eye.Please these dogs that are still alive need YOUR voice to be heard.Won't you please speak for them?

thanks (Anonymous)

thanks, i will go on that site to speak up!it is very wrong what has happened to those dogs!! man!it makes me sick.i'm so disgusted at the whole football issue now.i will not be watching any more football games on tv!

Keeping in Focu...



to "not a bully " you seem to have alot to say , and alot of opinions , and also , alot of free time , and you seem to encourage everyone else to run for a position on the school board ... why don't you run for the position ?? you seem to be the perfect candidate , you seem to have some good sugestions on how to fix all of the corruption , and you obviously have alot of insight that the rest of us aren't priveledged to , so why don't you help our school system , our kids and our community out and go ahead and run , yourself ?? i would probably back you Sharon ??

Chris (Anonymous)

I've had it up to my nose with politics (from school boards all the way up to Congress and the President). I'm not going to vote for any incumbents.

Keeping in Focu...

I believe what has happened is this: Linder apears to have picked up the endorsement of PETA and The Humane Society. It seems that his opening campaign salvo: "Residents Need Voice", implicitly pertains to our local pets as well. Good job Steve.

To: Keeping in ...

That's a stretch, but pretty darn funny!

Quick Comment (...

If anything, the Duncan kids have been held to much higher standards and have been cheated out of things - they rightly deserved simply because they are Bob's kids. This is not fair to them - and I can only hope they don't hold negative feelings toward Norwalk forever.

To the Duncan kids: I see you on the court (where did you get that athletic ability?!) and in public at other events - if I were your parents, I would be very proud of each and every one of you. You keep your heads high! You are and have paid your dues, and will get the good that is coming to you. You're great kids and your dad is a great person. Don't let anybody tell you different. I was very happy that my son went through NHS under his watch.

RE: Quick Comm...

This is part of what is wrong in this town. Sports aren't everything...