It has been over 50 years of service to the Malden school district for Ward 4’s Iovino
Three departing members of the Malden School Committee who have each made a significant impact were recognized at their final meeting Monday night. Ward 4 School Committee Member Leonard Iovino has contributed over 50 years to the Malden Public Schools, over 40 years as a teacher and administrator and over 20 years on the School Committee. Ward 7 School Committee Member Michelle Luong was elected to the board in 2019 for the first time. Ward 8 School Committee Member John Froio also did not seek reelection this past fall.
Iovino declared earlier this year he would be seeking reelection to another two-year term in this past fall’s election, and Luong ran for an open Ward 7 City Council seat this past fall and left the School Committee seat open in the ward.
Dawn Macklin, who finished second to Iovino in the 2019 race, ran unopposed this time around and won the open seat in the 2021 race. Coincidentally, Keith Bernard also finished second in 2019, to Luong, and topped Nicole Mossalam to claim the Ward 7 School Committee seat in this year’s election. Sharyn Rose Zeiberg, a political newcomer, defeated Bruce Friedman for the open School Committee seat in Ward 8.
The praises were many for the departing members at Monday’s meeting.
“We may never again see a record or longevity of service in our school district as Mr. Iovino has contributed to the Malden community,” said Mayor Gary Christenson, who has served alongside Iovino for decades, as a fellow School Committee member in the early 2000s and as chairperson of the body for the past 10 years as Mayor.
Mayor Christenson also praised Luong for her contributions. “Ms. Luong has been a strong advocate for all our students, particularly those served through our Special Education staff,” he said.
Ward 5 School Committee Member Adam Weldai also served with Iovino a decade ago in Weldai’s first go-around on the school board and most recently again when he returned as an elected member. “Lenny [Iovino] has been a valued colleague, a mentor and, most importantly, a friend for much of my life,” Weldai said. “His service to the Malden district on so many levels is simply remarkable and is not something we can replace. You have touched so many lives and will leave so many memories.”
Weldai also thanked Luong for her service. “You [Luong] have worked very hard to give a voice to the voiceless, and all of the students and their families truly appreciate that.”
Mayor Christenson and the other members of the School Committee presented Iovino and Luong with official municipal citations commending them for their service as School Committee members to the Malden community. Froio, who was attending the meeting virtually, will receive his citation at a later time.