Newcomer Amy Spelke won a three-year seat on the Maine School Administrative District 75 school board over Jim Burak on Tuesday, while Michael Timberlake beat out two other candidates.

The two will represent Topsham on the board.

Samuel Hutson Hayward won Bowdoinham’s seat on the school board for a three-year term.

Spelke defeated challenger Burak 2,435-1,101 to win the three-year seat. The seat was held by Dorothy Gardiner.

Timberlake earned 1,996 votes, according to the results from Linda Dumont, the town clerk. Theresa Collins, who was the closest opponent, received 960 votes and Elizabeth Caron received 503 votes.

The seat was held by Jim Burak. Sarah Ward was originally elected to this seat, and Burak was appointed after Ward resigned in July.


Hayward defeated Joshua Lohr, 852-313, to serve on the board. The seat was held by Rachelle Tome.

MSAD 75 serves Topsham, Bowdoinham, Bowdoin and Harpswell.

“The turnout was amazing with almost 4,000 voters so that was a little hard to anticipate what would happen, but I am very pleased with the results,” Timberlake said.

Michael Timberlake won an unexpired two-year term on the Topsham-based Maine School Administrative District 75 board. Michael Timberlake

Timberlake said that his immediate goals are to work with other board members on various issues in a constructive manner.

“I think we need to start the search for a new superintendent by next year,” said Timberlake. “I also think we need to address the gaps in teacher pay, and we need to focus on keeping our schools open and students safe through the pandemic.”

Timberlake said that it is important to work on developing trust and improving communication with teachers.


“We need to move away from some of the anti-union rhetoric that has created a distrustful atmosphere and recognize that teachers and parents are important in educating our children, and so I would like to change the tone and create a better partnership there,” said Timberlake.

He added that one of the immediate challenges he expects to face regarding the pandemic is the winter athletic schedule.

“Our district relies on other private facilities for sports like swimming and hockey,” said Timberlake. “They have different rules that we cannot control. I think we have some work to do to ensure that majority of the students can participate safely.”

He said he doesn’t have any proposals for the board yet and wants to join the board with an open mind.

“I plan on being humble about some things that I don’t know and look to the other board members to help me get up to the speed and be part of the team,” Timberlake added.

Spelke previously told The Times Record that she sees this election as an opportunity to “pay it forward” for the next generation of kids.


Amy Spelke won a three-year term on Topsham-based MSAD-75 school board. Wright Impressions

“I am overwhelmed and humbled by the support I received. I am happy to have won the election and ready to get to work,” said Spelke.

Spelke said that she doesn’t have any specific policy that she would want to bring in the first day as a board member. However, she wants to catch up on the speed and get caught up on the next agenda.

“I hope to bring positive energy to the work of the board and support all the teachers and students,” said Spelke.

In the past, Spelke volunteered in schools for various parents’ committees. She was also the secretary of the MTA Sports Booster for three years. Currently, she works remotely as a project manager for a Virginia-based economic consulting firm. Much of her work is focused on calculating the costs and benefits of certain aspects of transportation policy.

Hayward, who won the Bowdoinham seat said he feels incredibly honored to have been chosen by his community to serve on the school board.

“I am grateful for the support I have received through this campaign, and for all of the connections I made with families in Bowdoinham. I am also thankful to have the election behind us, as I am ready to get to work,” said Hayward.

Samuel Hutson Hayward, will represent Bowdoinham on Topsham-based MSAD 75 School Board. Samuel Hutson Hayward.

“I join this board with humility, knowing the current board has been hard at work on many issues. I look forward to learning from current board members and engaging alongside my fellow “freshman” and bringing an open mind to the challenges the district faces,” added Hayward.

Hayward said his primary concern has been keeping students safely attending in-person school.
“The most recent school board meeting established a solid framework for the current program to continue, so my hope is that this issue will require less direct intervention on a regular basis — though the board must remain vigilant when it comes to student safety,” said Hayward.

This story was updated 1:45 p.m. Wednesday to correct the number of votes for Samuel Hutson Hayward. Hayward received 852 votes, defeating Joshua Lohr, who received 313 votes. 

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