Our Board consists of nine members elected to serve, without compensation, for overlapping terms of four years each. These roles often include long hours, a great deal of sacrifice, and a strong sense of dedication to the mission of the District.
President, Karen L. Brown
Karen Brown brings a strong background in education to her work as a board member. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in education from Slippery Rock State College and a Master’s Degree in administration from Duquesne University, as well as a Principal’s Certification. She has worked as a teacher in elementary and middle grades and as a middle school principal.
Ms. Brown and her two children (now college graduates themselves) graduated from the Baldwin-Whitehall School District, which was central in her desire to become a member of the board, “After being an educator for 40 years, I felt it was time to give back to the community that educated me and my children.” Brown feels that understanding the District’s legacy is key to progress, “This District was built with strong values and traditions. I want to uphold those traditions and values while finding ways to move the District forward. The more we can be on the cutting edge of education, the better we will be able to meet the needs of the students in our fast-technology world.”
First Vice President, David J. Solenday
Mr. David Solenday is a graduate of Baldwin High School. He went on to earn a degree from Robert Morris University and now works as a project coordinator at Community Care Behavioral Health. Mr. Solenday has been a lifetime PTA member, works with the Baldwin Highlander Music Patrons, and volunteers for Baldwin Community Day. He has two children, Harrison a member of the class of 2016 and Elizabeth a member of the class of 2019.
Mr. Solenday is an ardent advocate of public education and feels BWSD’s active volunteers, fantastic staff, positive leadership, and diverse culture make it great. He became a member of the School Board “to represent different groups in the community and ensure that others have a voice in making educational and administrative decisions. I have a personal interest in preserving and improving the quality of our schools. I believe in quality public education for current and future students.”
Second Vice President, Dr. Anthony J. DiCesaro
Dr. Anthony DiCesaro has been in practice as a chiropractor for nearly two decades and is currently the proprietor of Whitehall Health Centre. Dr. DiCesaro graduated from the University of Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania College of Chiropractic and has owned clinics across the country throughout his career. Dr. DiCesaro has one son, also named Anthony, in the District.
Dr. DiCesaro believes strongly in the character of each of our communities. “All of our surrounding communities are full of good, hard-working people that care deeply for their families and friends.” This is the foundation the school board builds on. “If we put the welfare of the children first and the community as a whole a close second, we cannot fail.”
Tracy L. Macek
Ms. Macek attended Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she earned a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in business and marketing. She currently works as a Municipal Collections Administrator. Ms. Macek has two children, Madelyn a graduate of Baldwin High School, and Bella an 8th grader at Harrison Middle School.
Ms. Macek has been deeply involved in the District in a variety of capacities, including coordinating Baldwin Borough Community Day, as well as coaching and administrative roles with the Greater Baldwin-Whitehall Athletic Association. “I have always been a proponent of education and made the decision to run for the school board to support the District’s standard of educational excellence along with my strong desire to be a voice for the people of the District.” One of our sources of strength, she notes, is our diversity, “There is an overall sense of family values and tradition in the District. The population is richly diverse, which makes it quite unique.”
Mr. Daniel Knezevich was born and raised in Whitehall and graduated from Baldwin High School. He has worked at Schneider’s Dairy for nearly 30 years, first as a union driver and currently as Logistics Manager. Mr. Knezevich has two daughters at BHS: Katie, a senior, and Molly, a sophomore.
Mr. Knezevich cites honesty, compassion, and a willingness to do anything in order to get the job done right as hallmarks of strong leadership. “I ran for school board in hopes of being able to make a significant change. I believe in the Superintendent’s vision of providing our students a quality education.”
Louis J. Rainaldi, Jr.
Louis J. Rainaldi Jr. has worked in the Information Technology industry for over 20 years and currently leads a global team of IT professionals. Working in a high-pressure, deadline-driven culture, Mr. Rainaldi has honed the leadership skills he brings to the service of the Baldwin-Whitehall School Board. He volunteers with Not One More, Pittsburgh Chapter, and was involved in his church, Stewart Avenue Lutheran Church. He and his wife have two daughters in the District, Gianna and Savannah.
“I was motivated to run for an elected office to help restore pride and community trust in our District. Our District is facing major challenges and needs to have a trusting relationship with the community and staff. Having a long history of leadership experience in the corporate world, I have come to believe in servant leadership. I believe a true leader is there to serve others and lead by example, listening to all sides and viewpoints, and relating to others in an effort to unify for the common good. I also believe that a good leader is an active listener and energetic doer.”
Elliot J. Rambo
Elliot Rambo is graduate of Robert Morris University with a degree in finance. Previously, he interned at the Allegheny County Department of Budget and Finance and the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Democratic Caucus. He enjoys being active in his community, serving as a member of his church, St. Elizabeth’s, and the Baldwin Borough Independent Democratic Club.
Mr. Rambo is a graduate of Baldwin High School. He held a leadership role as Senior Class President while in school and is passionate about being involved in the District now. Mr. Rambo shares, “I became a member of the School Board to help improve the education I received as a K–12 student in the Baldwin-Whitehall School District and to bring a fresh perspective that represents the Millennials of this District.” He always strives to keep students at the forefront, “I have a promise to the BWSD students: to always vote with them as my top priority, knowing every decision has a drastic impact on the education of our students.”
Martin Michael Schmotzer
Mr. Schmotzer studied English at the University of Pittsburgh and went on to receive his Bachelor’s Degree from St. Fidelis College Seminary. He is the owner of BABS & Associates and formerly served as the Pennsylvania State Representative for the 22nd District in the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives. He is involved in a broad range of community organizations, both charitable and political. Mr. Schmotzer and his wife have two daughters, Katherine and Victoria, both graduates of the District.
Mr. Schmotzer believes the robust socio-economic diversity of the population is what differentiates our communities from others in the region, citing the affordable housing, educational opportunities, large number of sports programs for boys and girls, wide-range of extracurricular activities, and the diverse student population. Mr. Schmotzer has served on the School Board for over 16 years.
Janice Tarson holds a Bachelor’s Degree in sociology from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, a Master’s of Social Work Degree from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Social Work, and an Associate’s Degree in nursing from Community College of Allegheny County. She is a Registered Nurse currently working in a post-anesthesia care unit of an ambulatory surgery center. She has two children at Baldwin High School: Nicholas, a senior, and Jenna, a sophomore. Her community volunteer efforts include working with the Greater Baldwin Whitehall Athletic Association, as a parent-member of the Baldwin Football Parents Club and the Baldwin Girls’ Tennis Club, Treasurer of the Baldwin Boys’ Basketball Boosters, and Secretary the WPISL Baldwin Girls’ Slow Pitch Softball Club.
Ms. Tarson joined the School Board, “to help grow and move the District forward, to maintain current opportunities for our students, and then grow and expand those opportunities once the District has achieved financial stability.” Her wish for our students is, “that they spend the rest of their lives believing that they grew up in the best community ever and that they remember their primary education fondly and their years at Baldwin High School as the best years of their lives.”