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Does MUSD Trustee Lynn Cogdill Live in Madera? Print E-mail
News - Opinion
Written by Jack Porter   
Monday, 20 October 2014 18:47

EDITORIAL - Where does Madera Unified Trustee Lynn Cogdill really live? He and his wife own houses in both Madera and Bakersfield. His wife hasn't lived here in Madera for years and when Mr. Cogdill had his heart attack earlier this year he was treated at a Bakersfield hospital. His cell phone number is a Bakersfield phone number. The bank for his re-election campaign is Kern Schools Federal Credit Union in Bakersfield. In the last four years he has written editorials in the Bakersfield Californian Newspaper where he is credited with being a member of the Madera Unified School District's Board of Trustees but in the same story identified as a resident of Bakersfield. So where does Lynn Cogdill call 'home?'

Even before Cogdill was first elected in 2010, Big Valley News has questioned many things about Mr. Cogdill but not too many people seemed concerned. His future fellow school board members didn't seem to care. The voters elected him despite the fact that no one really knew anything about Lynn Cogdill.

Lynn Cogdill came to Madera Unified with the promise of bringing truck-loads of school supplies for our students who, the pysch-tech from the Madera County Mental Health Department labeled as "too poor to afford pencils," with a "for profit - non-profit" organization that stole it's name from a national educational foundation (Parent Teacher Association - P.T.A.)

He was elected in 2010, largely because his opponent, Ed McIntyre, misjudged Cogdill's ability to convince people to vote for him. It didn't hurt Cogdill's chances that the life long Maderan, McIntyre, did not campaign for the seat. This year Cogdill is facing McIntyre again and from all the "McIntyre for School Board" signs around town and his performance at the various candidates nights, I think Mr. McIntyre learned his lesson and is working hard to win this November 4th.

In the last four years Cogdill's actions have directly caused a lawsuit against the district by a former school administrator, brought an investigation by the Madera County District Attorney's office for possible criminal action and repeatedly caused chaos during the board meetings that some on the Madera Tribune's Redline have compared to episodes of the  'Jerry Springer Show.'

Lynn Cogdill has been a major disruption to the daily operations of our schools. And with the facts BVN has just learned, he may not even be legally qualified to hold his current office. You see, to sit on the Madera Unified School District board, a person must live within the district's boundaries. More specifically, they must live within the boundaries of the area he or she would represent on the board.

While Mr. Cogdill does own a house at 2300 West Third, he is renting that house out to another family. Supposedly he has made arrangements with that family to periodically use one of the rooms in the house,   but the reality is he spends the majority of his time at his Bakersfield home with his wife, Ildiko Cindy Kusai Cogdill.

Ildiko  lived with Cogdill at the West Third address for a short time, however his wife moved back to a house in Bakersfield soon after the 2010 election. Cogdill originally attempted to sell the house on Third, but the sale fell through. He then found renters to move in and cover the cost of his mortgage. While the house was for sale Cogdill told everyone he was renting a room in a house on Shannon Avenue near West Fourth Street about a block from Cogdill's original Madera home on West Third Street.

Both Lynn Doyle Cogdill and Ildiko Kusai Cogdill are still on the deed for the house on West Third in Madera. But Lynn and his wife are also named as owners of a house in Bakersfield at 607 Echo Summit Drive, according to that property's deed. However according to the Madera County Elections Department and the Madera Unified School District Cogdill currently claims the house at 2300 West Third as his official residence.

But, hold on, according to the United State Postal Service, sometime within the last ten months Cogdill changed his address from West Third in Madera to Echo Summit in Bakersfield. We know this because this last July, when Cogdill changed his voter registration address back to his house on West Third Street, a confirmation card was mailed by the Elections Department. That card was returned to the County Clerks Office with a "return to sender" sticker from the US Postal Service showing his new address as being  "607 Echo Summit Drive" in Bakersfield.

Cogdill claims he changed his address with the post office due to the health issues he experienced and was treated for in Bakersfield earlier in the year, but he continued to sit on the school board, accept his monthly pay check from the school district and use the health insurance they provided him for his service to the district. Ironically before Cogdill's health issues, the trustee announced in a board meeting his plans to resign before his term was up, but when his health began to fail, he changed his mind.

Those health issues included being hospitalized at Kaiser Permanente in Bakersfield for a heart attack. Since his release he continues to travel to Bakersfield for appointments with his doctors at the Bakersfield Kaiser, despite the Fresno Kaiser having one of the finest cardiology departments in the valley that works hand in hand with St. Agnes Hospital's cardiology department which is one of the nations highest ranked cardiology hospitals.

And when he leaves for Bakersfield he parks his truck outside his rental house on West Third and takes the train. As his neighbor can attest, that truck sits for several days and never moves. Why is that?

Because Lynn Cogdill has no business in Madera County other than the Madera Unified School District. According to him he has retired from the Madera County Mental Health Department. Though anyone that has followed his battles with his former employer (Madera County) in the Madera County Civil Service Commission would probably question Cogdill's definition of the word 'retired.'

Before you send in your absentee ballots or actually vote in November ask yourself this, "Do you want to vote for someone that may be lying to you about whether or not they are actually a committed member of our community?" And if they are not, can you trust that they will consistently make your child's school a top priority? Do they really have your child's best interest at heart?

This November the race for Trustee for the Madera Unified School District Area 2 is a two man race and the only two candidates that are qualified to serve are Ed McIntyre and Jimmy Monreal. Let Lynn Cogdill serve the school districts down in Bakersfield where he really lives.

BTW....... Believe it or not, Big Valley News endorses Ed McIntyre for Trustee.

Our view is that Jimmy Monreal should be the assistant superintendent of business for Madera Unified. The smart move would have been for the current board to have hired him into that position two years ago when Kelly Porterfield left it. Apparently that did not happen because Mr. Monreal's brother had been recently hired to be the district's deputy superintendent.  Consider though that this is a position Jimmy Monreal has proven himself in not only during his service with the Golden Valley Unified School District in Madera Ranchos, but also during his time with Yosemite Unified School District up in Oakhurst.

It's a shame that the current board and superintendent haven't made wise choices for our district. But what do you expect when Superintendent Ed Gonzales does his recruiting from the inmate population of the California Prison system.  Check back next week and I will explain why this is the main reason I also recommend a NO vote for Measure G, the general obligation bond for Madera Unified.

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