Sunder to Move, Leave the Board

On Thursday night, Board member Madhavi Sunder confirmed what many in the community had been suspecting – not only will she not seek a second term, but she will be leaving the community this summer.

She made the announcement to her colleagues during the board comment section of the school board meeting.

“I have been a member of this community for 19 years, my husband and I have felt very honored to be on the faculty of the UC Davis School of Law and we feel incredibly grateful that we were able to raise our two children here.

“We are now moving,” she said.  “I wanted to share that with the public.

“It is thus with a bittersweet feeling that we share the news that we have both accepted professorships at Georgetown University Law Center. We will be moving the family to Washington, D.C., this summer,” she said in a statement posted on Facebook.  “The move will bring us closer to parents, siblings, and the world’s most adorable nephew. We look forward as well to joining Georgetown’s incomparable law and technology faculty.

“It means that I will not be in Davis to complete my entire term, my seat is up for election this November,” she told her colleagues.

She added, “I will still be here and would like to continue my serving as long as I can.”

It is not clear what will happen with her seat.  The last time a board member resigned it was Nancy Peterson in 2014, in the wake of the volleyball scandal.  Ironically, it was around the same time that Ms. Peterson resigned, that Ms. Sunder decided to run for school board.  Ms. Peterson resigned in March.  The board at that time, with the election eight months away, opted to fill the seat with an appointment.

Ms. Sunder put herself up for the appointment, but the board opted to appoint Alan Fernandes, who had run for school board in 2012 but finished third behind Susan Lovenburg and Nancy Peterson.

Ms. Sunder then ran for the regular seat that fall and won an overwhelming victory.

This time, however, the board seat would be only be vacant for a few months prior to the election.  That leaves open three possible courses of action.  By the time Ms. Sunder resigns it might be the end of June, and that would leave basically August, September, and October prior to an election.  The board could opt to allow her to complete her term either remotely or coming to town, they could operate with four members, or they could make a short-term appointment.

Obviously on Thursday the board did not discuss any course of action.

Madhavi Sunder told her colleagues: “What an incredible honor it has been to serve a trustee on the Davis school board.  This is an incredible district.  We have gotten to see so many of the different kids.”

—David M. Greenwald reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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  1. Howard P

    Aside from the person (lest I say anything  that would lead someone a Sunder), I think folk still have time to declare for election (not sure, but hope, and thank her for that timing), and I opine that the Board wait out that process… no interims (appointments), no “remote” participation… now a ‘lame duck’…

  2. Michelle Millet

    I want to thank Madhavi for her service to our community and wish her, her husband and their delightful children continued success and happiness as they embark on this next chapter in their family’s life.

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