The Ocean City Board of Education voted unanimously Wednesday (July 23) to appoint Gregory Whelan to fill a vacant seat on the board.
The board made its decision after interviewing five candidates at a public meeting.
Whelan, 51, is an attorney who is the director of business operations at Pfizer Inc. He is able to work from his home in Ocean City.
Whelan has a wife, Michelle, and two children in the district. Sophia, 8, will enter third grade in the fall, and Cullen, 5, will start kindergarten.
He replaces Pete Madden, who relinquished his school board seat when he took office as a city councilman on July 1.
Madden was elected to a three-year term to the board in November 2013, but he was elected to City Council in May 2014 and took office on July 1. The law prevents him from serving in both seats.
Whelan will serve 16 months in his appointed seat. He would face an election in November 2015 if he wanted to retain the seat.
The Board of Education interviewed four other candidates during the public meeting on Wednesday:
- Dale F. Braun, Jr.
- Michael A. James
- David E. Powell
- Edmund L. Wisham, Jr.
Candidates were asked to submit letters of interest and resumes by a July 9 deadline. Whelan will be sworn in at a special meeting at 7 p.m. Aug. 6.
In his interview, Whelan said he grew up in Ocean City and graduated from Ocean City High School (Class of 1981). He lived in northern New Jersey but wanted his children to be educated in Ocean City. He moved back to the island four years ago. Both his parents were educators.
As an attorney in charge of multi-billion-dollar contracts and a former auditor in quality assurance, Whelan said he could a private-sector perspective to the public position.
Whelan is a member of the indie rock band The Wrens.