Four candidates running for three seats on NCHS Board
By Todd Marver
Jeremy Bultman, Keith Suedmeyer, Eric Behrmann and R. Dwight Seaton II are running for three spots on the Nashville High School Board in the April 4 election.
Jeremy Bultman is self-employed and owns and operates a number of businesses: The Flooring Company, Inc. located in Nashville; Hornet Ice, located in Nashville; and Bultman LLC. – commercial and residential rental properties in Nashville. He is also a lifelong farmer in Washington County.
Bultman attended Okawville High School for four years, Southwestern Illinois College for two years and Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville for one year. He served as president of the Okawville Jaycees from 1992-1994 and currently serves as president of the Nashville Sports Boosters, since 2016.
Bultman said the future of the Nashville High School campus is constantly evolving with the times, keeping up technology in the classrooms, updating school facilities and searching for new ways to make Nashville the best learning experience possible for all students.
Bultman said that not only does he bring years of business experience, but also he has been active in the community by coaching at all levels as well as fundraising for numerous organizations.
“I hope I have the chance to prove these experiences to be a great asset to the high school for the benefit of our students,” he said.
Keith Suedmeyer is a re-entry specialist for incarcerated veterans at the Department of Veterans Affairs. He has master’s degrees in social work and public health.
Suedmeyer served on the Finance Board and Board of Elders at Trinity Lutheran Church. He also served in several leadership roles for the Society for Social Worker Leadership in Healthcare, including serving as the Illinois Chapter president.
“I have professional experience as a supervisor for multiple organizations that have given me the opportunity to work through the financial responsibilities of managing a department budget, responsibility for improving employee satisfaction and meeting accreditation and government regulations. I believe these experiences will apply to the financial, employee recruitment and retention and regulatory challenges that a high school has to address to be successful,” he said.
Suedmeyer is a lifelong Nashville resident who graduated from Nashville High School, which he said gives him a historical perspective about the school and investment in the school’s success.
“Recent news and research shows that teenage mental health has declined during, but also before, the pandemic. Teacher, staff and administrator stress and burnout are important issues. Training and working in mental health prepared me to look for ways that mental health affects our students and staff and ensure we are doing what is possible to support them,” he said.
Suedmeyer said his primary goal is to maintain excellence at Nashville High School.
“There is a high standard of success in academics, music, student leadership development, community service, sports and other extracurricular activities. However, there are, and always have been, financial, regulatory and cultural challenges that affect our community and school. We need to be proactive about current challenges as well as trying to anticipate future needs so that we can maintain an excellent school for our students and community,” he said.
Suedmeyer said he would like an opportunity to serve the community. He has a child in high school and he said he would like to support the teachers and administrators as they provide an “excellent” educational experience for his son and the other students.
Eric Behrmann is Vice President at Lanter Distributing. He received a bachelor of science degree in business management from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale in 1998.
Behrmann said at the start of his career, he worked for one of the “Big 4” accounting firms (PwC) assigned to the St. Louis office in a tax consulting and managerial role traveling throughout the U.S. He said it was a great training ground at a young age to learn how to work with many different types of people with various business backgrounds from all types of cultures in all parts of the U.S., while also advancing up the management levels within the firm.
“I got the opportunity to work with firm partners, CPA’s, engineers and client executives in various accounting positions at numerous fortune 500 type companies. For the past 16 years, I am now part of the ownership team at my family’s owned and operated company that employs nearly 200 employees in the transportation and warehousing industry. In my current Vice President position, I fulfill various roles including new business development, customer contract negotiation and execution, budgeting, financial and operational management and marketing for the company,” he said.
Behrmann has two kids that are student athletes in the district. He said they have a great overall school district and would love the opportunity to be part of this administration that continues to advance the school in new ways and continue to improve the quality of education, athletics and all activities offered to students.
“I would welcome the role of being a voice and connection between our students, parents, community and the rest of the school board. I believe serving as a member of an elected school board is a great way to help create a shared community vision for our school’s academic and athletic achievements through our students’ and student athletes’ successes,” he said.
Behrmann said as someone who has been a leader and developer of people in business for over 23 years, he has the skills to listen to concerns, manage budgets responsibly and allocate resources that maintain and improve student programs for the school.
“I’m a hard worker, good listener and have the willingness and passion to spend the time necessary to be well-informed on the issues coming before the board to make good group decisions. With my business background, I feel I can help influence the fiscal health of the district,” he said.
Behrmann said his goals are to listen, learn, research and use his experiences and expertise as a business leader, community member and father to help the administration govern in a way that will unite and support students, faculty and the community of the school district.
“My focus will be on decisions presented to the board that have a positive impact on our students, staff and facilities while representing the community. I hope to make an impact on our school district as so many previous great school board members have done in the past with their volunteered time serving on our school board. Our school district has always been one of the top districts in all of Southern Illinois and I’d like to be a small part of continuing that tradition and success through service on this board of education,” he said.
Dwight Seaton II
Dwight Seaton is a field service engineer team leader at General Motors Company. He received a bachelors of science degree in automotive technology. Seaton has also served on the Little Hornet Football Board for several years. In addition, he has been on several training committees in his career as well as coached youth sports.
“During my 26 years of experience with General Motors Company, I have been a leader on two separate teams where I lead a group of professionals. Currently, and in the past, I assist employee performance, lead mentor training and establish plans of action to enhance employee performance,” he said.
Seaton’s wife has been an educator for over 20 years, his mother-in-law was an educator for 36 years and he currently has several cousins who are administrators and teachers.
“Thus I have learned more about the field of education than I ever thought possible. Now, as a parent of three children going through the education system, this provides me with a unique perspective on various aspects of the field of education. I have had many opportunities to contribute to technical schools and community colleges about curriculum concepts needed for students to be successful in their respective specialized fields of study,” he said.
Seaton said his goals for the future are to continue to strengthen the education provided by Nashville schools; ensure all kids have the same opportunity to participate in all extracurricular activities; work with teachers to provide the best educational opportunities to advance educational standards and offerings available for students; and assist the school district in continuing to produce the most capable, well prepared, productive citizens in society.
“My ‘why’ is because of Nashville’s children. Our most precious commodity is our children and we must make sure that we give them opportunities to grow, learn and fail in order to prepare them to be the most productive members of society possible,” he said.