2 to vie for vacant school board seat

NASHUA – A longtime city principal and a former teacher will face off for a vacant seat on the board of education.

Charlie Katsohis, of 52 Tinker Road, and Dan Hogan, of 71 Watson St., both filed to run for the seat Monday, the last day to file. City Clerk Paul Bergeron said a third candidate filed but did not have enough valid signatures to qualify.

The special election will be held Sept. 9, the same day as the state primary. The winner will take over the seat vacated by Edwina Kwan, who resigned July 1. The term expires Dec. 31, 2009.

Katsohis, 65, is a lifelong Nashua educator, serving as principal of Bicentennial Elementary School since it opened in 1997 until 2005, when he moved to Ledge Street Elementary School.

Katsohis retired last year but stayed on as interim principal until the end of the school year. Katsohis said he collected the necessary signatures last week but didn’t decide whether he was going to file until Monday.

He said he made up his mind when he found out nobody had filed yet with one day remaining.

“I started giving it some thought and decided this is a short-term situation and is one way to find out if this is something I want to do,” he said.

Hogan, whose nephew Dennis Hogan is a member of the school board, has been a volunteer track coach at the high school level in Nashua for 15 years. He also has experience teaching at Nashua Catholic Regional Junior High School and is a Vietnam veteran.

Hogan said he closely followed the negotiation of the teacher contract.

“I felt that I had a better handle on it than some of the people on the board,” he said.

Hogan said he saw the vacancy as an opportunity to make a difference in the community and bring a new perspective to the board.

“I figured maybe this is an opportunity to do something for the kids and do it from an elected position,” he said.