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School Board Members

School Board Members

 Robyn Friedman

Robyn Friedman
Board President

Term Duration: November 2021

  robynpt5@gmail.com

  641-840-2215

  1500 South 12th Avenue West
Newton, Iowa 50208



Robyn has lived in Newton since 2000 and is employed as a physical therapist at MercyOne Newton. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in Biology from Wartburg College and a Master's Degree of Physical Therapy from the University of Iowa.  

Robyn is a current board member on the Jasper County Conservation Board, is an active member of the PTA, and serves on the Newton Wellness Coalition. She is an avid runner, and has been a coach of the local Girls on the Run program and a Newton Summer Kids Running Club.  She attends and is involved at First Lutheran Church in Newton.  

Robyn is married to husband Bryan Friedman and they are parents of 3 children.  Isaac (Rose-Huleman Institute of Technology), Leo (Newton Highs School), and Talia (Woodrow Wilson Elementary School).

Cody Muhs

Cody Muhs
Board Vice-President

Term Duration: November 2021

  ccmuhs34@yahoo.com

  641-275-5974

  800 East 18th Street North
Newton, Iowa 50208



Cody Muhs is a Principal Engineer/Paralegal at Pella Corporation where he has been for 20 years in several different engineering roles.  Cody graduated from the University of Illinois as an Industrial Engineer and received a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Drake University.  Cody has lived in Newton since 2001.

Cody is active with the Boy Scouts where he serves as the Treasurer and a Committee Member.  He is also active with the Knights of Columbus where he serves as Trustee and Youth Director.

Cody's wife, Sarah, is a preschool teacher at Share Preschool.  They have 2 children.  Cameron is at Berg Middle School, and Owen is at Newton High School.

Josh Cantu

Josh Cantu
Board Member

Term Duration: November 2023

  josh.cantu.ncsd.schoolboard@gmail.com

  641-840-1091

  1103 North 4th Ave West
Newton, Iowa 50208



Mr. Cantu has lived in Newton since 2002 when he joined Pella Corporation in an engineering role.  Since that time he has held many roles within Pella Corporation including, most recently, engineering team leader.  He holds an undergraduate degree from Iowa State University in Mechanical Engineering and a graduate degree from the University of Iowa in Business Administration.

He is an active member of the Newton Planning and Zoning Commission and of his church, First Luthern Church of Newton.  In his spare time he enjoys spending time with family and friends, golfing, and working his latest remodeling or landscaping project.

His wife is Katie Cantu and they have two children, Emily (8) and Garrett (5).

Donna Cook

Donna Cook
Board Member

Term Duration: November 2023

  dcook2014@gmail.com

  641-521-4123

  518 North 2nd Avenue East
Newton, Iowa 50208



Ms. Cook grew up in Newton and is a graduate of the Newton Community School District.  She holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Nursing from the University of Iowa, and is retired.  
 
Ms. Cook has been an active volunteer in the community.  She is passionate about family and community involvement in public education and has served on the local, state, and national Parent Teacher Association.  She is a member of the First Christian Church.
 
Donna is most proud of her three children (Newton Alumni): Christopher, Katie, and Kevin.  She also enjoys five wonderful grandchildren, with three grandsons attending Newton schools.

Travis Padget

Travis Padget
Board Member

Term Duration: November 2021

  travispadget@gmail.com

  319-621-4679

  511 North 9th Avenue East
Newton, Iowa 50208



Travis Padget was born and raised in Newton.  After graduating from Newton High School in 1991, Travis went to Germany as a Foreign Exchange Student, then returned to Iowa to attend Cornell College in Mt. Vernon.

While at Cornell College, Travis studied Art, Psychology, and Theatre.  Travis moved to Boston in 1996 to work on a Masters Degree in Mental Health Counseling at Boston College.  His work during and after his MA, focused on chronic mental health and substance abuse recovery and community integration.
 
Travis returned to Newton in 2001 while he prepared for his studies at the University of Iowa Law School.  After completing his Law Degree in 2006, Travis returned to Newton as a full-time resident to continue his work in mental health.  Travis also served as Executive Director of the United Way of Jasper County, bringing his experience and education back to his home town.
 
Most recently, Travis has joined Edward Jones as a Financial Advisor. 

Graham Sullivan

Graham Sullivan
Board Member

Term Duration: November 2021

  grahamsullivan.schoolboard@gmail.com

  641-275-0253

  1011 East 17th Street South
Newton, Iowa 50208



Graham Sullivan is the Executive Director of Newton Main Street and is a third generation resident of Newton.

She is an avid volunteer and is the Treasurer of the Newton Community Education Foundation, an ex-officio of the Newton Development Corporation Board and the Newton Housing Development Corporation Board.  Graham is also a board member of Hometown Pride, a member of the City of Newton Economic Stakeholders group and President of SIAC, the School Improvement Advisory Committee.  She also serves on the Newton Fest Committee and is a Junior Achievement Volunteer.

Graham and her husband, Pat, have two children:  Laek (9) and Sean (7), they are students in the Newton Community School District.

Mark Thayer

Mark Thayer
Board Member

Term Duration: November 2023

  mwthayer2@gmail.com

  641-831-3431

  1110 East 17th Street South
Newton, Iowa 50208



Mark has been living in Newton and serving as the administrator of the Newton Clinic since 1996.  Mark is a graduate of Grand View University in 1994 (BA) and 2014 (MS).  Mark is married to Michelle and they have two children, Maddison (Iowa State University) and Mitchell (Berg Middle School).  Mark and his family are members of Sacred Heart Catholic Church.

Newton By The Numbers

12

Parks

1

Nascar track

90

Displays of public art & sculpture

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