Garrison School Board Names Two Members

Apicello and Speiser will finish vacated terms

The Garrison school board on Oct. 2 appointed Jocelyn Apicello and Matthew Speiser to fill seats vacated over the summer. The district said it received five applications for the volunteer positions.

Apicello is co-founder of the Ecological Citizen’s Project and teaches public health at William Paterson University and with the Bard Prison Initiative. She and her husband, Jason Angell, moved to Garrison in 2011 to start Longhaul Farm.

Speiser, a native of Maplewood, New Jersey, is the chair of the history department at Marymount School of New York in Manhattan. He and his wife, Phoebe Geer, the daughter of the former longtime rector at St. Philip’s Church, moved to Garrison in 2016.

Apicello and Speiser will succeed Ray O’Rourke and Diana Swinburne, both of whom resigned in July, citing other commitments. O’Rourke was first elected in 2009 and Swinburne in 2004. The board discussed reducing its size from seven to five members before deciding to make the appointments.

Both seats will appear on the May 19 ballot, along with the seat held by Courtney McCarthy. The person elected for Swinburne’s former seat will serve a full, three-year term, and the person elected to fill O’Rourke’s seat will serve the remaining year of his term.

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