Pima County School Superintendent appoints former TUSD Board member Bruce Burke to TUSD Governing Board

Bruce Burke, former TUSD Governing Bd. member

Dustin Williams, Pima County School Superintendent today appointed former TUSD Governing Board member Bruce Burke to the TUSD Governing Board. A vacancy on the non-partisan, volunteer five member board was created on October 3, 2019 when 3 term Board member Dr. Mark Stegeman resigned.  His replacement will serve through the  end of December, 2020, and could run for election in the General Election of 2020.

15 people applied for the vacancy by Oct. 24 to the School Superintendent’s office: https://blogforarizona.net/15-apply-for-tusd-governing-board-vacancy/

Bruce Burke, former TUSD Governing Bd. member


The other two TUSD Board members up for re-election in Nov. 2020 are 2 term member Kristel Foster, and one term board member Rachael Sedgwick, who is rumored to be seeking the District 5 Pima County Supervisor position instead.

Press release here:

Tucson, AZ – “Pima County School Superintendent Dustin J. Williams has appointed Bruce A. Burke to the Tucson Unified School District Governing Board. Mr. Burke will fill the vacancy left by the October 3, 2019, resignation of Mark Stegeman.

Bruce A. Burke is a retired lawyer who served on the TUSD Governing Board from 2003-2010. In 2018, Bruce received the Ray Davies Lifetime Humanitarian Achievement Award from the Educational Enrichment Foundation whose mission is to provide resources to expand and enrich student learning in the Tucson Unified School District.

“After an extensive review process, Bruce Burke stood out as the candidate who most closely aligns with the TUSD governing board adopted mission, vision, and values. Bruce is highly respected in this community and has the experience that will ensure a smooth and effective transition for TUSD. Bruce is committed to serving all TUSD stakeholders while focusing on student learning and success,” said Superintendent Dustin J. Williams.

“Given the breadth and variety of my experience, I am confident I can quickly get up to speed to deal with the issues currently before the board. I will come to meetings prepared to share my problem-solving ideas. Yet, I also recognize that the shared ideas of others may be better than mine, and that their ideas could improve on mine,” said Bruce A. Burke during the application process.

The position will be up for re-election in November 2020 for a four-year term. Superintendent Williams will conduct Mr. Burke’s Swearing-In Ceremony on Tuesday, November 5 at 2:30 p.m., at the Pima County School Superintendent’s Office, 200 N. Stone Ave.

“This was a tremendous experience. I was truly overwhelmed by the quality of candidates who applied for this vacancy. I commend the 15 outstanding individuals who were willing to dedicate their time to serve in this capacity that is so vital to the educational success of our students,” said Superintendent Williams after the process.

Statement by Bruce A. Burke regarding his appointment to the TUSD Governing Board

I wish to express my appreciation and thanks to Pima County School Superintendent Dustin Williams for selecting me to fill the vacant seat on the TUSD Governing Board. It is an honor and privilege to serve.

I look forward to working with Superintendent Trujillo and all the members of the governing board to strengthen and improve the educational experience of every TUSD student.”

I also want to thank Mark Stegeman for his many years of service on the governing board, and I wish him every success as he continues his life’s journey.”

Matt Stamp, Communications Director



Carolyn’s note:  Attorney and former TUSD Bd. member Bruce Burke had applied for the last TUSD Governing Bd. vacancy in 2011, but was not appointed to it. Dr. Alex Sugiyama, a political newcomer and UA Eller School lecturer was instead appointed to the position.


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Carolyn Classen
Carolyn Sugiyama Classen, a life long Democrat, was born & raised in the State of Hawaii, was a Legislative Aide for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye on Capitol Hill, and practiced law for a while. In Tucson she worked as a tribal staff attorney for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and later was the Interim Executive Director of the now defunct Domestic Violence Commission. In 2008 she became a “My Tucson” guest columnist for the Tucson Citizen newspaper, then continued blogging for Tucsoncitizen.com for over four and a half years. Her blogsite was entitled “Carolyn’s Community” about community events and some political news, until Gannett Publishing shut down the site on January 31, 2014. She started with Blog for Arizona on Feb. 11, 2014. Part time she has been sitting as a Hearing Officer in Pima County Consolidated Justice Courts Small Claims Division since April, 2005. She is married to University of Arizona Distinguished Professor Albrecht Classen, a native of Germany. They have one son, who lives in Seattle, WA with his wife and daughter. She is also the Editor of the Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition website, www.southernazjapan.org (since Jan. 2013).