School Board Member John Heckman: Names in the News
Solon Patch sat down and talked with new Solon School Board member John Heckman about his new job.
Editor's Note: This is an installment in a regular series called Names in the News. In it, we will feature movers and shakers in the Solon community, both the obvious ones and the less so. Know a person we should feature? Tell us in an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
John Heckman is Solon's newest school board member. Tonight, he will take part in his first school board meeting.
Heckman lives in Solon with his wife Lisa and two sons, who are students in Solon Schools. He is a certified public accountant who works as a vice president of finance for Kirtland Capital Partners in Beachwood. He is a frequent volunteer for the schools. Before being named to the school board, he ran unsuccessfully for a seat last year.
On why he wants to serve on school board: "I just believe in public education. I believe everyone is entitled to a great education."
On why Solon schools are so successful: Heckman said the schools excel in all the key areas: academics, athletics and the arts. "I believe the schools have anything for anyone," he said. "And you have enthusiastic teachers who go above and beyond. I think I said this when I ran: 'It takes a village.' And the village is here."
On being the only board member with kids in the schools: "I think the five members of the board a public servants representing the people, whether you have kids in the schools or not. I'm the eyes and ears of the public. That being said, having kids in the schools is going to give you a different perspective."
The most important issue facing the schools in the near future: Finances and dealing with declining enrollment. On finances: "I'm always fiscally conservative," he said. "I don't like to waste money." On enrollment declines: "If it starts to level off, we have to think about to efficiently and effective manage the buildings and staff we have."
What skills he brings to the board: Besides financial acument, Heckman said he's a good listener. "I listen to all sides. I try to put myself in your shoes. This is all a learning experience for me."
What he does in his free time: Heckman said he enjoys spending time with his children at their various activities. He said he loves Drum Corps International, high school and college sports and musical theater.