MEET ERICA GELVEN, WHO IS SEEKING REELECTION TO THE CLINTON BOARD OF EDUCATION….
I firmly believe that our elected officials are only effective if they “go to where the people are, and go from there.” Our leaders cannot lead effectively if we don’t listen to people’s concerns, fears, ideas and dreams.
To that end, I stand for QUALITY EDUCATION FOR ALL, achieved through sound practices and fiscal responsibility. “Quality education” does not necessarily equal college, but it must equal students acquiring the tools and skills to achieve their goals, whether they involve a trade, skill, higher education and/or military service.
Currently, I am a proud and dedicated member of the Clinton Board of Education, to which I seek reelection. In addition to my general board service, I serve on the Instruction (including the Homework committee), Public Relations and Policy subcommittees, and am honored to have taken on the responsibility of chairing the School Nutrition subcommittee.
My husband Marc and I moved to Clinton in 2000, to be closer to my family (Lillian Allen and her descendants), some of who have summered/lived in Clinton since the 1930s. They established a tradition of service to their community that I am proud to continue.
I have been involved in many civic organizations over the last ten years, in both member and leadership capacities.
Since 2011, I’ve been a member of the Clinton Democratic Town Committee, working on several local, state and national elections and referenda. I have canvassed, phone banked, submitted many letters to the editor, and served as a delegate for Senator Murphy in 2012.
I have been a member and Board member of Clinton PTA since 2012, advocating for issues of importance to our children and schools, not the least of which was working for passage of the education budgets in Clinton. I served as Membership Chair, which resulted in a greater than 10 percent increase in our membership, before becoming President.
Until my appointment to the Clinton Board of Education last year, I served on the Clinton Human Services Advisory Board (formerly known as the Clinton Youth and Family Services Advisory Board), in part filling the roles of Secretary and Vice Chair. This Board was charged with reviewing and advising on the work of the Clinton Human Services Agency.
Since moving to Connecticut, I worked for seven years at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, as a researcher with the Injury Prevention Center. Our research had many policy implications, from teen driver safety to child occupant safety to violent death epidemiology.
I am currently a member of the adjunct faculty at Three Rivers Community College, teaching various courses in psychology to a diverse and enthusiastic student population. Additionally, this fall I will begin a similar position at Quinnipiac University.
I earned a Bachelor of Arts with Distinction degree from Simmons College in 1992. My major was Psychology. I earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree from The George Washington University in 2003. My specialization was Developmental Psychology.
Before moving to Connecticut, I lived in Maryland, much of the time I worked for Governor Parris Glendening (D), in his Office of Legal Counsel, as a Special Assistant. The issues handled by the office were wide-ranging, from Supreme Court cases (big tobacco) to Smart Growth to judicial appointments to legislative matters. Governor Glendening was a conservationist, pro-choice, pro-education, pro-public safety, fiscally conservative Democrat. Outside of the tremendous education in governing I gained, I learned how to “stand for something:” to do your research, make a decision, and advocate for what you truly believe is in the best interests of your constituents.
My husband, Marc, to whom I have been married for 22 years, is a Master Sergeant with the Connecticut State Police. I have two glorious daughters, Rachel (14) and Sara (12).
After the death of Trooper First Class Kenneth Hall in 2010, a fellow Connecticut State Police spouse and I founded “C.U.F.F.S. Concerned Family & Friends Support Network.” C.U.F.F.S. was created to provide a place of support and empathy for anyone who cares for and about a member of the CSP family, beyond the support offered by the agency and the CSP Union. C.U.F.F.S. offered valuable support to its members, and the agency as a whole, during and after the Sandy Hook tragedy, when we were all grieving and needed support in supporting our troopers.