Elections – Spring 2020

New Leadership Springs Forward MTI-Voters Endorsed Candidates Prevail in Local Elections

New leaders endorsed by MTI-Voters for Wisconsin Supreme Court and MMSD Board of Education were elected last week. MTI-Voters has supported and championed Jill Karofsky along her journey leading up to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Congratulations to Jill for running a strong and successful statewide campaign. Her energy is contagious and she is someone we want protecting civil/constitutional rights on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Madison School board candidates will assume office shortly, bringing change to the BOE. Members of the Madison Board of Education are elected in April and serve a three-year term. MTI-Voters endorsed candidates Savion Castro (Seat 2) and Nicki Vander Meulen (Seat 7) both prevailed in their races. Christina Gomez Schmidt won the close race against Maia Pearson (Seat 6 – formerly held by Kate Toews). We thank Maia for running for this seat and for her commitment to Madison’s students.  We also thank Kate Toews for her years of service and for her leadership on the Board as Treasurer. We look forward to working with Christina in the coming weeks. The newly-elected BOE members will bring their ideas and energy as they join current BOE members Cris Carusi, Ananda Mirilli, Ali Muldrow, and Gloria Reyes in representing our community and leading our District.

* In order to honor the Dane county Public Health guidelines for social distancing, we encourage voters to obtain an absentee ballot online. Visit: https://myvote.wi.gov/en-US/VoteAbsentee
Mark your calendars:

Spring Primary Election Day

Tuesday, February 18

Spring General Election & Presidential Primary

Tuesday, April 7

MTI Voters endorsed candidates for the April 7 Election:

Jill Karofsky for Wisconsin Supreme Court

Savion Castro for BOE Seat 2

Maia Pearson for BOE Seat 6

Nicki Vander Meulen for BOE Seat 7

Who is MTI-Voters?
MTI-Voters is the political action committee of MTI that seeks to identify those candidates most likely to advance policies supported by the members of MTI, policies that support MMSD staff and students, and advance the quality of public education in the District. The MTI-Voters Committee is a representative body of MTI members, comprised of the Presidents of each MTI bargaining unit, the MTI Treasurer and nine (9) others elected by MTI’s Faculty Representative Council. This member-comprised committee, guides MTI’s political endorsement process and advances recommended endorsements to the thousands of MTI members who contribute to MTI Voters and vote on endorsement recommendations.

This spring we have an opportunity to elect candidates who support and value public education. When voters turnout in high numbers, public education wins!

Below is a list of candidates MTI Voters Political Action Committee will be interviewing for consideration in our endorsement process. Candidates have been asked to complete and return questionnaires by January 17. Visit this page again for the most up to date information.

Feb 18 Spring Primary Election Results
Both of MTI-Voters endorsed candidates, Jill Karofsky for Wisconsin Supreme Court and Maia Pearson for BOE Seat 6 made it through Tuesday’s Primary Election. Now primary candidates will face off in the April 7 General Election. Jill Karofsky is running against Dan Kelly.  Maia Pearson is running against Christina Gomez Schmidt for BOE Seat 6.

There will also be two more school board seats on the April 7 ballot: Incumbent Nicki Vander Meulen (MTI-Voters endorsed candidate) is being challenged by Wayne Strong for BOE Seat 7. Savion Castro (MTI-Voters endorsed candidate) is running unopposed for a one-year term in a special election for BOE Seat 2. Savion was appointed to the board last summer to fill out the remainder of Mary Burke’s term.


The April 7 election is an important one. The Wisconsin Supreme Court seat will be a close race! We need everyone to Get Out The Vote to support candidates down the ballot. In addition to our local elections, there will be a Presidential Primary on the April 7 ballot. MTI-Voters does not interview or endorse national level candidates.


BOE Seat 6:  MTI- Voters has endorsed Maia Pearson as the most qualified candidate in this race. In advancing this recommendation, the Committee highlights Ms. Pearson’s record of community organizing on Madison’s south side “Save Our Supermarket” campaign, her professional financial background including the Department of Revenue; her commitment toward advancing public education; and her strong support of the potential referenda. We also appreciated Ms. Pearson’s suggestions in holding community forums and going door-to-door to educate voters about the referenda which may be on the November 2020 ballot. Additionally, she is a graduate of MMSD and is a proud MMSD parent of three students.  

Volunteer Opportunities for Maia’s campaign:  www.maiapearson.com or contact VOTE4MAIA@GMAIL.COM

•  BOE Seat 7: MTI- Voters has endorsed Nicki Vander Meulen as the most qualified candidate in this race. In advancing this recommendation, the Committee highlights Ms. Vander Meulen’s unwavering support to secure a Cost of Living increase for employees, her advocacy for funding special education programs, and her involvement in strengthening Madison’s public schools for all students.  During her interview Nicki stated that “fighting for labor should be commonplace – not unique.” Additionally, she highlighted the need to align our support staff with the teachers unit for paid sick days and pay for emergency snow events. 

Get Out The Vote Volunteer Opportunities for Jill’s campaign: 

Today is just the start. Get ready to support Jill for Justice every day until April 7!

We need your help to share our campaign with your friends and family. Together, we can inspire voters to turn out on April 7 and get one step closer to winning back your seat on the Wisconsin Supreme Court! More information online

•  Wisconsin Supreme Court: MTI- Voters has endorsed Jill KarofskyIn advancing this recommendation, the Committee highlights Ms. Karofsky’s support for public education, her legal experience and work as a trial court judge, her strong support of fair and independent courts, and her dedication as an award-winning advocate for victims and those in need.  We feel she is a strong candidate for this race, not only demonstrating her drive in the courtroom, but also as a triathlete. Her energy was contagious and we believe she is someone we want protecting civil/constitutional rights on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. 

Endorsements as of February 12, 2020: 

The MTI-Voters Committee met on February 5 to interview candidates for the MMSD Board of Education and discuss endorsement of an MTI member who serves on the Dane County Board of Supervisors. Following the interviews, the MTI-Voters Committee concluded to recommend the following endorsements which were approved on February 12. 

  • BOE Seat 2: MTI-Voters has endorsed Savion Castro.  In advancing this recommendation, the Committee highlights Mr. Castro’s advocacy work for the 2019 cost-of-living increase; his collaborative efforts expanding the Black Student Union (BSU) to a citywide presence; and his leadership serving as a “bridge builder” on the Board. Mr. Castro was the only applicant for Mary Burke’s vacant seat to contact MTI regarding his interest in serving on the Board. He’s an MMSD graduate who participated in UW-Madison’s PEOPLE program with great success. During his interview he referenced that many MMSD staff and teachers helped him achieve to his full potential and considers being on the school board as an opportunity to give back to the District.

    •  Dane County Supervisor, District # 18: MTI-Voters has endorsed Michele RittIncumbent (and MTI member), Faculty Rep, and Chair of the Ad Hoc Special Education Committee. Ms. Ritt is facing no opponent in District 18. 

100 Black Men of Madison –  School Board Candidate Forum

Thursday, March 19

6:00 PM – 7:30 PM

James C. Wright Middle School

1717 Fish Hatchery Road, Madison, Wisconsin 53713.

The 100 Black Men of Madison, in cooperation vital community organizations, will stage a Candidate Forum involving those those that will contest the Madison Metropolitan School District Board, 7 April.
Candidates Maia Pearson and Christina Gomez Schmidt who seek representation of Seat # 6 and Nicki Vander Meulen and Wayne Strong who seek representation for Seat # 7 have agreed to participate.
Candidate / Office Questionnaire 

Madison School Board

* Savion Castro
School Board Seat 2                                                (1 year term to complete Burke’s resigned seat)
MTI Candidate Questionnaire
Karen Ball
School Board Seat 6
MTI Candidate Questionnaire
* Maia Pearson
School Board Seat 6                            

MTI Candidate Questionnaire

Christina Gomez Schmidt
School Board Seat 6
MTI Candidate Questionnaire
Wayne Strong
School Board Seat 7
MTI Candidate Questionnaire
* Nicki Vander Meulen
School Board Seat 7 (Incumbent)
MTI Candidate Questionnaire

Justice of the Supreme Court (10-year term)

Daniel Kelly
Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidate (Incumbent)
MTI Candidate Questionnaire

Edward A. Fallone      Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidate

 MTI Candidate Questionnaire
* Jill Karofsky
Wisconsin Supreme Court Candidate 
MTI Candidate Questionnaire
Early voting is available at all Municipal Clerk Offices. The links below will provide the details on early voting where you live.

Bring a proper Voting ID:  www.bringit.wi.gov

Voting Information

NOTE: A valid Voter ID is required to vote (details at the link, goes to Wisconsin GAB Website)

Voter ID Information: City of Madison

How to obtain a Free Wisconsin ID for Voting: Click Here!


My Vote Wisconsin – Check your registration status, find your polling location and obtain a personalized sample ballot

Registering to Vote in Madison
Request an Absentee Ballot (City of Madison Only)

Registering to Vote (Dane County)

Registering to Vote (Wisconsin)

Wisconsin GAB – Voter Information Center
Information and Frequently Asked Questions

Absentee and Early Voting Information

Other Related Links:

School Board Policies Regarding Political Action