Buckeye Charter School Boards, Inc. (BCSB) was founded in 2007 and is Ohio’s only statewide organization created by and for charter school board members. BCSB was created as a resource to network, learn and grow as a board member. In 2009, BCSB became a non-profit 501c3. In 2015, the executive committee voted to eliminate membership fees and to become a FREE resource to all Ohio charter school boards.
Since 2009, the Ohio Charter School Movement has been through many changes and BCSB works to address the needs of Ohio’s board members focusing on practical resources and processes boards can use in addition to information so necessary in Ohio’s ever-changing charter school movement.
Members of the Board
Rod “retired” from 26 years in Law Enforcement, the last 6 as Chief of Police. He is currently Vice President of the Guard Division of a security firm whose clients span throughout Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.
Rod has resided in the Southwest Ohio area of Middletown his entire life. Rod and his wife have a blended family of 4 sons and 1 daughter along with 3 grandchildren. He enjoys spending time with his family, a good cigar and an occasional trip to Anna Maria Island, Florida or Las Vegas!
Rod continues to serve on the boards of 3 charter schools because he grew up in a family that believed in giving back and volunteerism.
“I became involved with charter schools to continue serving the youth of the community that I had served during my law enforcement career. It has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. As the Board President of 2 Drop Out Recovery High Schools, it is truly an honor to be able to see young men and women achieve their personal goal of graduation along with the pride families have in being a part of that celebration.”
Eric S. Fankhauser
Founding Member & Vice President
Professionally, Eric is Vice President of Toledo Metal Spinning Company, a family business over 90 years old that forms metal to customer specifications.
Personally, Eric has two grown children, Jonathan and Kelsey. He loves to water ski, surf and do just about anything on the water.
“I believe that each family and each child should have a say in where they go to school, no matter where they live or their income level. One size does not fit all in the world of education. I am a strong proponent of school choice and I feel by serving on the boards of two different schools I am helping to do my part in keeping the school choice available for families in the Toledo area and families all around the State of Ohio.”
R. Gene Schuster
Gene guided Ohio Connections Academy, a statewide e-school for the last 15 years. He is CEO of Synerg-Ed Associates, a higher ed enrollment services consulting firm. Previously, he directed technology integration at Ohio State and Miami universities. Recognizing the value of associations from having lead an international one, to promote quality leadership and best practices, he is enthusiastic about development of BCSB.
Gene and his wife are proud parents of two sons, one in California, one in OH, one granddaughter and hopefully a grandson very soon!
“I continue my service on the Connections Academy board hoping the grand experiment with using technology to assist educators use of materials will someday individualize education enough to make learning more effective and stimulating than it seems to be now.”
Winford Dearing serves as the Board President for FOCUS East and serves on the board for Focus Southwest, both drop-out recovery schools in Columbus. Winford brings years of experience to his current role as Principle with Winford Dearing and Associates LLC, providing financial and grant management services to non-profits.
Previously, he served as Senior Director for the Department of Mental Health in Washington D.C. and as CFO of Franklin County Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Board.
As grandfather of 7 boys, one will find Winford fishing or coaching middle school basketball with these lucky boys!
“I stay involved on the boards of charter schools because I understand poverty and know how important the drop-out recovery schools are for our kids. Students living in poverty graduate and are on their way to achieve success in life because of our work! That keeps me involved.”
James M. George
James holds a B.S. (Business Administration) Degree from Walden University and was chosen to complete an Executive Leadership Certificate at Case Western Reserve University. James also completed the Customer Experience Certificate Program from George Washington University and was selected to be a member of the Board of Advisors for the CX Program at GWU. James is employed as a Business Development Manager at American Tire Distributors working with Regional, National and International Corporate partners to deploy their aftersales tire programs.
James lives in the Akron, Ohio area and is the proud dad of a son (Andrew) and daughter (Meghan). James enjoys time with his family, SCUBA Diving, the beach and the Portage Lakes.
“After attending a Drop-Out Recovery graduation ceremony, I knew I needed to do more to assist children and young adults further their education to brighten their futures. Thus, I currently am Chairperson of 3 charter schools located in Canton, Akron and Columbus!”
Founding Member & Administrator
Sally Perz, President, Cardinal Learning, LLC., is a former member of the Ohio House of Representatives and worked many years bringing charter schools to Ohio. Accomplishing that important goal, Sally’s legislative office became the state’s “go-to” center for information on these “new” public schools. She launched the Ohio Charter School Resource Center which later merged with the Ohio Charter School Association. She served on both Boards. Sally then was instrumental in the development of BCSB and continues to provide support as its Administrator.
"I believe charter school boards are underutilized. Through continuing education and development, board members will be better prepared to meet academic, fiscal and other challenges calling for their leadership. Thus, my ongoing work with BCSB!"