Meet the Board of Education Members

MikeRoeslerMike Roesler, 2nd Vice President

Mike Roesler took his seat on the Rapid City Area Schools Board in July of 2017.  He is a retiree of the Rapid City Fire Department having served as a firefighter for 31 years, the last ten as Battalion Chief.  He has an A.A.S. in Fire Science from Casper College, and worked as an adjunct instructor for several years at Western Dakota Tech in their Fire Science program.  He is a past member of the Advisory Council for the Family Heritage Alliance.  Roesler has lived in Area 4 since the 1970’s and is a member of the North Rapid Civic Association.

Mike and his wife Jody have two adult children and three grandchildren – all students in the RCAS district.

Mike is the Area 4 representative, 2017-2020. Click here for an Area 4 map.

Contact Mike
3929 Brooke Street
Rapid City, SD 57701
Home: (605) 343-7299
mike.roesler@k12.sd.us

Ron RiherdRon Riherd, Board President

Ron Riherd was elected to the Board of Education in 2016. Ron taught and coached in South Dakota for 38 years.  Twenty-seven of those years he taught at Stevens High School. He graduated with a double major in mathematics and physical education and holds a masters degree in mathematics from the University of South Dakota.   Ron is past president of the South Dakota High School Activities Association and the South Dakota Basketball Coaches Association. He is past co-treasurer and current President Elect of the South Dakota Retired School Personnel. Ron owns and operates a lawn sprinkling service and does crop hail adjusting in the summers.

Ron and his wife Gloria have two grown daughters both of who graduated from Stevens High School.

Ron is the Area 3 Representative, 2016-2019. Click here for an Area 3 map.

Contact Ron
3745 Corral Drive
Rapid City, SD 57702
Cell: (605) 484-6942
ron.riherd@k12.sd.us

Matt stephens small

Matt Stephens, Board Member

Matt Stephens has been a member of the RCAS Board of Education since July 2012. Stephens holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Economics from the University of South Dakota and a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln. He maintains a private law practice at Stephens Law Office where he has been in practice since September 1994. Stephens is a former member of the South Dakota Army National Guard, where he obtained the rank of First Lieutenant.

Matt and his wife Vicki have three children, one attending SDSU after graduating from Rapid City Central, and two other children currently attending Rapid City Central. Stephens himself is a 1986 Rapid City Central graduate.

Matt is the Area 1 representative, 2015-2018.  Click here for an Area 1 map.

Contact Matt
4513 Jewel Court
Rapid City, SD 57701
Cell: (605) 484-1784
matt.stephens@k12.sd.us

Curt Pochardt, Board Member

Curt Pochardt took a seat on the Board in July, 2018. He is a native of Sioux Falls and has lived in Rapid City for 35 years. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from USD and did graduate studies in education at the State University of New York, Oswego.

Curt says he decided to run for the Board of Education because of his life-long commitment and dedication to public education. For several years he served as a substitute in the Rapid City schools and says proudly he enjoyed working in every school in the District – even some no longer in operation. Paraphrasing Willie Nelson, Pochardt says “My heroes have always been teachers,” adding that “they still are it seems.”

Curt is the Area 2 representative. Click here for an Area 2 map.

Contact Curt
Address: 1314 7th Street
Rapid City, SD 57701
Cell: (605) 381-4633
Curtis.pochardt@k12.sd.us

Christine StephensonChristine Stephenson, Board Member

I was born and raised in Rapid City, into the fourth generation of the Schmid and Brezina families. I have a doctoral degree in physical therapy from the University of South Dakota. For the last nine years, I have worked with kids and families at LifeScape (formerly Children’s Care).

My husband Hans and I own Dakota Angler and Outfitter. We have one daughter, Elsa, a first grader at Wilson Elementary. We have volunteered at Wilson since Elsa enrolled, and we love being a part of the Wilson family.

I decided to run for school board after serving in both the Emerging Leaders program for Rapid City Collective Impact and on the Core Planning Committee for Rapid City Area Schools. Rapid City has so many caring, generous people dedicated to improving our town. My goal as a school board member is to strengthen the connections between the school district and the community, and to support students, families and educators. With good schools, we can attract jobs and investment that will enhance economic opportunities and improve the quality of life for all.

Christine is the Area 5 representative, 2017-2020.  Click here for an Area 5 map.

Contact Christine
Cell: (650) 484-8794
christine.stephenson@k12.sd.us

Amy PolickyAmy Policky, 1st Vice President

As a parent in the Rapid City school system, she has been actively engaged in the schools as an education advocate from numerous platforms including classroom teacher volunteer, Pinedale PTA member, Stevens High School Parent Network member, RCAS Parent Key Communicator, RCAS instructional Council member. She has served as the PTA President at West Middle School for the past 4 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics from Purdue University.

Amy has lived in Rapid City for 23 years, having returned with her husband Don as he joined the family business They have 5 children, 3 currently in Rapid City Area Schools and two graduates from Rapid City Stevens High School.

Amy is the Area 6 representative, 2016-2019.  Click here for an Area 6 map.

Contact Amy
Cell: (605) 391-6743
amy.policky@k12.sd.us

KateThomasKate Thomas, Board Member

Kate Thomas joined the RCAS Board July 2015. She has lived in RC for 34 years. She is a graduate of St. Thomas More. She is married to Vince (Stevens HS) for 18 years and has 7 children. She is a member of Decoding Dyslexia SD, SDCH Educators & BHCH Educators. She attended Northern University & has completed a medical transcription course. She is a consultant for ViVi Jewelry and is studying to obtain certification as Barton System tutor.

She is devoted to & invested in her kids’ education. Currently she home educates 6 children, 3 of which dual enroll at Central HS & East MS. Kate is a tutor of the Barton System for her dyslexic children. Her kids participate in soccer, orchestra & Federation of the North American Explorers. Her oldest is attending College in Denver, CO.

Kate is the Area 7 representative, 2015-2018  Click here for an Area 7 map.

Contact Kate
6907 Greenfield Drive
Rapid City, SD 57703
Home: (605) 393-8689
katharine.thomas@k12.sd.us

Simon new photoDr. Lori J. Simon, Superintendent

Dr. Lori Simon joined the Rapid City Area Schools in July 2016. Dr. Simon holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Vocal Music from the University of Wisconsin-Superior, a Master’s degree in Elementary Education with an emphasis in Special Education from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, an Education Specialist degree from the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, and a Doctor of Education in Leadership degree from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.

Dr. Simon has been a kindergarten teacher; a high school special education teacher; an elementary, middle school, and high school administrator; and has served in two assistant superintendent roles previously. All of her administrative experience has been in large urban or suburban school districts. Dr. Simon has presented at several national education conferences on the topics of school improvement and student engagement, and has been recognized by the Minnesota Department of Education and the National Youth Leadership Council for her work with youth engagement.

Dr. Simon and her husband Gary have two adult sons and three grandchildren.

Contact Dr. Simon
300 6th Street
Rapid City, SD 57701
Work: (605) 394-4031
lori.j.simon@k12.sd.us