My name is Mike Spears and I have been a member of the Thief River Falls School Board since 1998.
I am actively involved on the Career and Technical Education Advisory Committee, Facilities Board Committee, Finance Board Committee, Meet & Confer Outreach, Strategic Planning Board Committee, Crisis Management/Liaison Officer Advisory Committee and NwALC Advisory Committee.
I moved to TRF in the fall of 1978 to attend AVTI for auto mechanics which at the time was still on the end of the high school. Before finishing my first year I accepted a job at Wilson Brothers, an auto parts store and machine shop. I worked for over 16 years at Wilson Brothers before starting my own business of Pennington Fast Lube. Owning your own business is very rewarding but also requires a lot of hard work. In January 1998, I also started as a full time firefighter for the city of TRF. In 2012, my son Devin joined me in the business to help with running the shop. My connection with the school district started in 1996 when then Superintendent Robicheau and Curriculum Director Sara Olson convinced me to serve on the Curriculum Committee. In the fall of 1998, I decided to run for school board and was elected. I find this a rewarding job when we look at all the great students we turn out to be leaders and productive parts of society. I have seen many changes since 1999, some good and some not so good. Some ideas in education have done a complete 360 change since 1999. Testing is just one example of this. Being a part of our building referendum has been one of the most rewarding parts as a board member.
We need to thank you our taxpayers and community leaders for helping to make this a reality. Our students received a great tool to help their education with the 1 to 1 technology upgrade. Thief River Falls Public Schools became a leader in the region with this update. I think one of the brightest stars of our district is our students that come back to work in our district.
My wife Kami works as an EA sub at Challenger and volunteers much time with PTSP there. She enjoys working with the students and staff. Our oldest son Grant ‘09 works at the Mayo Clinic as a Research Statistician and his wife Dana ’08 teaches elementary music in Owatana. Our son Devin ‘11 works at Pennington Fast Lube where the customers appreciate his friendliness. Our oldest daughter Shawna ‘17 attends the University of Northwestern in St. Paul with the desire to become an elementary teacher and return to TRF to teach. Our youngest daughter Trista is a freshman at Lincoln with no decision on a career path yet.