Governing board members of the La Cañada Unified School District paid tribute to their vice president during the most recent meeting, Ellen Multari’s last before her resignation.
Multari resigned May 20 because she will no longer be a resident of the district, Superintendent Wendy Sinnette explained during the recent virtual meeting. Multari and her family will be moving to the Palos Verdes Peninsula.
Unable to wish her goodbye in person due to the countywide “Safer at Home” order, Multari’s fellow board members played a brief video tribute they had made, which featured well-wishes from current and former members. They also announced that they were gifting her a telescope to send her off.
Sinnette has worked with Multari, a graduate of Stanford University who moved to LCF in 2007, since the latter was elected to the board in November 2011— just a few months after Sinnette became superintendent.
“This tribute could never adequately convey our gratitude,” Sinnette said in the video. “Everyone on the Zoom screen here wants to share their respect and admiration for you, and we know the district community wholeheartedly joins us in these sentiments. For my part, I will treasure our time together. You have provided me with the guidance I needed as a boss, the insight I needed as a colleague, comfort as a sister and kindness as a friend.”
“We’ll have time to celebrate more, but thank you for everything you’ve done for our community,” board President Joe Radabaugh added during the meeting.
Multari, who has previously served as the board’s president and clerk, thanked the other members for their support and said she looked on her time on the board fondly, admitting that she was afraid there wouldn’t be time in the meeting to fully reflect.
“But you made it really beautiful and heartfelt, and I really am so remorseful than I’m not with you all in person,” she said. “Having been in this role has been something that has enriched my life in a way I never really anticipated.
“I may be moving away, but I’m not moving out of your hearts. I’m always here.”
Applications to fill board seat opening soon
With some regret, the board then moved to their plan to fill the seat that will soon be vacated by Multari. Rather than ordering a special election or having the superintendent appoint someone to the seat, the board will collect applications from local residents and then vote on their new member.
Applications will be available starting Friday, and they will be due Friday, June 12, at 5 p.m. The application process will be followed by a series of interviews that will be conducted in special meetings, which the board noted would likely be open session.
The vacant seat is scheduled to be filled by Tuesday, June 30.