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Michael Urban

Contact info: mikejurban@gmail.com

Office sought: Board of Education

What is your dream for Wallingford?

I want to build upon our school’s excellent teachers and staff to be recognized as number one in the state, which will contribute to Wallingford being a highly desirable place to live, work, and play. This will open many more doors for all of our children to excel and achieve their dreams. Through reinvesting in our teachers and schools, we will achieve greater excellence and create a more desirable community for people to come to live, work, eat, shop, and learn. 

How do we get there?

To build our schools to become number one in the state, we need to reinvest in our teachers first. To do this we need to give them access to the tools and infrastructure to meet the needs of today and the future. Through supporting our teachers and staff, who already show strong dedication and love for our children's education, our children will flourish further and master the skills needed to excel in a global and complex society. 

Relevant experience

I have a strong commitment to our children's future, as my own three children are just starting their educational journey in Wallingford. My professional and volunteer leadership, professional experience, and familiarity with special education services provides me with a vast set of skills and life experiences to help advocate for our children, parents, teachers, and staff. 

Being certified as a black belt in lean six sigma process improvement methodology has afforded me the skill to lead groups through complex issues to find the most efficient and cost-effective solution. Beyond my background as an occupational therapist, I have served as an administrator in the federal healthcare system, overseeing a $27 million dollar budget; on university faculty, where I developed programs to meet national accreditation standards; and in several state and national leadership roles including the current Vice Speaker for the Representative Assessment for the American Occupational Therapy Association and Past President of the Connecticut Occupational Therapy Association. 

Schools

The role of the board of education is to work with, listen, and address the needs of students, teachers, parents, and the town government in relation to educational needs here in town. The board must be fiscally responsible while investing in the future via infrastructure, technology and strengthening student and teacher experiences in the least restrictive way. Our strengths lie in the diversity of educational programs offered, in the quality and passion of our teachers, and in the overall educational structure and utilization of school buildings. 

These three strengths can allow us to continue to improve our educational system to be the best in the state while reducing costs to allow for reinvestment into our educational infrastructure. We must update our schools’ physical plant and technology while reducing waste within the system. 

Address white supremacy and structural racism

I am a same-sex parent of a biracial child adopted through the DCF system here in our state. My mother is an immigrant from Italy who learned English in school. The experiences in my own family mean I sympathize and listen to families, students, and staff from all walks of life and believe in occupational and social justice for all. 

I am knowledgeable in what is required for special education and believe if we can go beyond the minimum, we should. I have been at meetings where consultants push their agendas, making claims about the law when the town is exceeding legal requirements already. I also have mentored people struggling with gender issues and have started to educate healthcare workers and students on the issue of anti-racism.


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