Running for Baraboo School Board in 2020?

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Do NOT take what I say here as the absolute truth. I am not a lawyer, or an accountant, nor have I ever run a campaign before. This is just what info I have found. At some point I will also add links to the relevant statues so you can see it read it yourself and verify it.


Unfortunately, it is difficult to find out what it takes to run for office and this creates a significant barrier to entry which is inherently undemocratic and reserves such civil duties to those who are have the time and who are financially better off which can keep this out of the hands of those who are suffering.

I will try to aggregate the many things that you may want to know if you are considering running for Baraboo School Board:

Let me know if I missed anything.

School District Information

Contact Info

Coming soon…

Ballot Requirements

Position Meta

Running for School Board for the Baraboo School District is a non-partisan and at-large position meaning that:

  • Non-Partisan – political parties are not needed to run, are NOT important, and are not declared when running
  • At-large – there are no districts or specific representatives for specific portions of the community. All board members represent all in the school district.


  • Adult – You have to be 18 years of age or older
  • Resident of School District – You must be a resident of the School District of Baraboo, but you do not need to be from a particular area within the school district. 
  • Submit 2 forms – You must submit 2 forms Forms by a specific date. Forms are available in the District Office after December 2nd and are also available from the State (links below)
    • The forms are the:
    • Forms must be returned to the District Office by Tuesday, January 7, 2020 at 5:00 pm in order to appear on the spring ballot.

Board Seats and Candidates for Election 2020

Board Seats Up for Election in April 2020

There are 3 board member seats up for election in 2020:

  • Gary Cummings
  • Tim Heilman
  • Doug Mering 

Current Candidates Running for School Board Election

Currently (7 Jan 2020), these are the candidates who have filed by the the Jan 7 deadline to run for School Board in 2020:

  1. Chasity Gabrielson (teacher?)
  2. Doug Mering (incumbent)
  3. Gwynne F. Peterson (former teacher or principal)
  4. James O’Neill (me)
  5. Paul Kujak (former Baraboo School teacher – civics or history I think).
  6. Timothy Heilman (incumbent)

Since there are only 6 people running for 3 seats that means that there is NOT going to be a primary February.

Election Dates

Primary Election

A Primary Election will only be held if there are more than twice the number of persons running for the open seats. In this case, since there are 3 seats open, there will only be a primary if there are 7 or more people on the ballot.

If there is a Primary Election required for School Board then it will be held on Tuesday, February 18, 2020.

Spring Election

The date for the Spring Election would be on Tuesday, April 7th, 2020.

Potential Votes to Win

You will need about 7,166 votes or more to help secure a seat on the Board.

Campaign Funding

Maximum Donations

See Contribution Limits @ State of Wisconsin Ethics Commission.

  • Individual or candidate committee may contribute $500.00
  • PAC’s may contribute $400.00 

Money Raised in Previous Elections

No one has raised or disbursed any money to run for school board in the past five years. 

I am assuming this means that no one has spent more than the $500 limit, after which everything would have to be reported.

Running for Office Training