The list of 17 applicants to fill a county Board of Education seat features some familiar names in education circles, as well as some relative newcomers.

Four former members of the board and a former candidate from the 2018 election are featured on the list to fill the vacancy left by current board Vice President Joy Schaefer. Schaefer is taking a position in Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner’s administration as }director of government affairs and public policy office, replacing Roger Wilson, who resigned.

Zakir Bengali, who served on the board from 2012 to 2016; April Miller, who served on the board from 2010 to 2018; Michael Schaden, who served from 2002 to 2010 and Ron Peppe, who served from 1997 to 2004, are among the applicants announced by Gardner’s office Wednesday morning.

Masai Troutman, who ran for the board in 2018 but lost in the primary, is also on the list.

The list of applicants also includes a dozen other applicants: David Bass, Tracy Dunheimer, Garth Fazio, Rae Gallagher, Susan Johnson, Ed Martinez, Caleb Rose, Dean Rose, Daniel Shapiro, Chuckia Tisdale, Desiree Tucker and Joao Vieira.

The County Council will interview selected applicants in closed session on Dec. 13. The final three applicants for recommendation to the county executive will have their interviews broadcast on television and webcast. The council will accept public comments on the final three candidates at 7 p.m. Dec. 17 in the first-floor hearing room of Winchester Hall.

Gardner will then submit one name back to the council for confirmation.

The appointed person will fill a term that ends in December 2020.

Follow Allen Etzler on Twitter: @AllenWEtzler.

Allen Etzler is a city editor at the Frederick News-Post. He can be reached at

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