School Board Members


Tracy Brunnette, Vice-Chair - Term Expires December 2017

South Washington County Schools
7362 E Point Douglas Road S, Cottage Grove, MN  55016
  • Tracy Brunnette has an accounting degree from the Carlson School of Management through the University of Minnesota. She works with American Family Insurance and is currently pursuing her ChFC designation.  Tracy volunteered extensively with ECFE and in various capacities across the district before being elected to the School Board in 2000. She has two sons who graduated from Park High School.

Jim Gelbmann, Director - Term Expires December 2015

2653 Cornelia Trail, Woodbury, MN 55125
  • Jim Gelbmann was first elected in November of 1995 and is the Board's senior member. He holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Minnesota Morris. He is currently Committee Administrator for the Minnesota House of Representatives Government Operations and Elections Committees. He also served as Minnesota's Deputy Secretary of State, Deputy State Auditor, the Executive Director of the Minnesota Board of Government Innovation and Cooperation, and State Director for former U.S. Senator Mark Dayton. He has been involved in school referendum campaigns before and during his tenure on the School Board and is a Eucharistic Minister at St. Rita's Church. He and his wife have four children - two sons and a daughter who have graduated from Woodbury High School and one daughter who is currently enrolled in Woodbury High School.

Laurie Johnson, Treasurer - Term Expires December 2015

8475 Savanna Oaks Ln., Woodbury, MN 55125
  • Laurie Johnson moved to District 833 in 1998.  She holds a bachelor's degree from Iowa State University, and is employed by Paisley/Thomson Reuters the past 4 years as an account manager, working with global firms to manage financial/risk/audit software deployments. Prior to that, she held several positions over 10 years with Norwest/Wells Fargo Bank. She lives in Woodbury with her husband and family. She has three sons who are Woodbury High School graduates. Laurie has volunteered as a Junior Great Books discussion leader in the elementary schools, has been a Cub Scout den leader, and has participated in two choirs and led various small groups at her church.

Ron Kath, Chair - Term Expires December 2015

9038 Jensen Ave. S, Cottage Grove, MN 55016
  • Ron Kath was first elected to the School Board in 2004 and was re-elected to another 4-year term in 2011. He is married and has one son. Ron holds an accounting degree from the University of St. Thomas. He has been employed by the Schwan's Food Company in their consumer package goods division for the past 28 years. He has experience in route sales, customer management, project management, systems training and is currently the Director of Customer Planning and Strategy for the company. Ron also volunteers for his church.

Kathleen McElwee-Stevens, Clerk - Term Expires December 2017

1590 11th Ave., Newport, MN 55055
  • Kathleen McElwee-Stevens holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Minnesota, and has taken post graduation courses in Psychology – Human Resources there as well. She worked at Newport Elementary School from 2003 to 2013 as a paraprofessional. Kathleen first served on the School Board in 2006-07 and is an active parent and volunteer in the district. She works at the Newport City Hall and served as the City of Newport Planning Commissioner from 2003-2005.

Katie Schwartz, Director - Term Expires December 2017

1212 Gary Dr., St. Paul Park, MN 55071
  • Katie Schwartz is a Park High School graduate who was first elected to the School Board in 2013. She and her husband have four children and reside in St. Paul Park. Their oldest daughter graduated from Park, two of their children are students in the district, and their youngest son will start school soon. Katie is currently a stay at home mom and a full-time student, working toward her Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Forensics and CyberSecurity. She volunteers with many groups within the community and district schools.

Sharon Van Leer, Director - Term Expires December 2017

2597 Alpine Dr., Woodbury, MN 55125
  • Sharon Van Leer was elected to the School Board in November 2013 for a 4-year term. She is married to the Rev. Thomas Van Leer and they have six children. Sharon holds a degree from Metropolitan State University in Business Administration. She has been employed at William Mitchell College of Law as a Multicultural Specialist and International Student Advisor for the past 23 years. She contributes to the overall effectiveness of academic programs and serves as an advocate for students. Sharon has served on the District’s Equity and Integration Community Board, SWC Educational Foundation Board, Minnesota State Troopers Oral Interviewing Board and the South Washington County Foster Parent Association.