Message to members of the Rivière-des-Prairies community

Joe Ortona
Montreal - Friday, November 13, 2020

Dear Friends,

A little over six years ago a friend recommended that I run in the English Montreal School Board elections. I consulted my family and friends, and to my surprise they urged me to submit my candidacy for school commissioner in Rivière-des-Prairies.  That turned out to be the best career advice I ever got! 

Why do I say that? Well, there hasn’t been a day in the last six years that I didn't want to work as your school commissioner. I loved my job and I enjoyed working for you. What a blessing to be able to say that! 

You welcomed me with open arms from my very first day, supporting and treating me like family. My time as your school commissioner was challenging and rewarding. I did my best and I was well rewarded in kind and in friendship. I was privileged to be part of a school community that we can all be proud of.

I'm looking forward to my new function as chair of the EMSB. In addition to student transportation, declining enrolment and the ongoing lawsuits against the government of Quebec, there will no doubt be new challenges. However, I know my time as your school commissioner has served me well and I am ready to face those challenges. I'm looking forward to serving and defending the entire EMSB community with the same interest and dedication with which I have represented RDP over the course of my last mandate. You are in excellent hands with my successor, Pietro Mercuri. His 15 years of dedicated service as a volunteer in the EMSB and as an advocate for public English language education is proof of his resolve to serve this community in his new role.

Thank you for the support and friendship over the last six years and I remain at your disposal as your chairman.

Kindest regards,

Joe Ortona
Commission scolaire English-Montréal
English-Montréal School Board

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