Many springtimes ago, I was secretary of Beachwood Elementary PTO, and we had a big problem. We needed a president to oversee a number of mundane yet essential tasks: coordinate room moms so every Beachwood child’s birthday could be celebrated; collect fees for class parties and field days; support our teachers; fundraise; generate, plan and run special events; and serve as a parent liaison, among countless other duties. It was an incredibly demanding volunteer job with lots of responsibility and little reward, and as such, no moms wanted it.

But Justin Berns graciously stepped in. By the next fall, he was efficiently running meetings, the lone dad in the room. He definitely saved the day for our schools and children, his actions underscoring the idea that no job in Beachwood is too small, no resident unimportant.

This is exactly the kind of individual we would be lucky to have safeguarding our city. This is in sharp contrast to my experience as a Beachwood resident these past few years. Any public official who does not know how to conduct himself professionally in an office setting, and then leaves taxpayers footing the bill for that behavior, is simply not serving those he was elected to represent. It creates the opposite of civic pride, and the collective shame is a disservice to all.

For that reason and many more, I sincerely hope my neighbors join me in voting for Justin Berns on Nov. 2.

Sarah Schwartz


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