Joe Fleckenstein

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Joe Fleckenstein
Joe Fleckenstein.png
Former candidate for
Board member, Harford County Board of Education, District F
Elections and appointments
Last electionJune 24, 2014
Term limitsN/A
Associate'sHarford Community College
Bachelor'sCollege of Notre Dame of Maryland
ProfessionDefense contractor
Campaign website
Joe Fleckenstein campaign logo
Joe Fleckenstein was a candidate for the District F seat on the Harford County Board of Education in Maryland. He lost election against incumbent Thomas Fitzpatrick and challenger Michael R. Hitchings in a primary election on June 24, 2014.


Fleckenstein earned an associate degree in business administration from Harford Community College. He later received a B.A. in business management from the College of Notre Dame of Maryland. Fleckenstein currently works as a defense contractor at Aberdeen Proving Ground.[1]



See also: Harford County Public Schools elections (2014)


The June 24, 2014, primary ballot included primaries for Districts B, C, D, E and F with the top two vote recipients in each primary advancing to the general election on November 4, 2014. Incumbent Robert "Bob" Frisch and challenger Laura Runyeon defeated Greg Johnson in District B. District C incumbent Alysson L. Krchnavy and challenger Joseph L. Voskuhl advanced to the general election by defeating John Anker. Nancy Reynolds faced challenger Mike Simon in her bid for another term in District D after defeating challengers Chris Scholz and Tishan D. Weerasooriya in the primary. The primary race for District E resulted in board member Arthur Kaff and newcomer Rachel Gauthier defeating Stephen Eric Macko and Barney Michel. Macko dropped out of the race after the withdrawal deadline which meant his name still appeared on the ballot. District F incumbent Thomas Fitzpatrick and Michael R. Hitchings squared off in the general election after defeating Joe Fleckenstein in the primary.

The District A race advanced to the general election without a primary as newcomers Frederick A. Mullis and Jansen M. Robinson were the only candidates to file for the seat.

In the general election Jansen M. Robinson won District A, incumbent Robert "Bob" Frisch was returned to District B, challenger Joseph L. Voskuhl defeated incumbent Alysson L. Krchnavy for District C, incumbent Nancy Reynolds won District D, newcomer Rachel Gauthier defeated incumbent Arthur Kaff for District E and incumbent Thomas Fitzpatrick won another term in District F.

This was the first time that county voters selected members for these seats on the Harford County Board of Education. Board members were appointed by the governor prior to a 2009 state law that turned six of the nine board seats into elected positions. There were board elections for two-year terms in Districts A, B and D in November 2010. Victorious candidates in the general election will take office in July 2015 along with three newly appointed members.[2]


Harford County Public Schools, District F Primary Election, 4-year term, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngThomas Fitzpatrick Incumbent 39.9% 1,881
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMichael R. Hitchings 38.2% 1,801
     Nonpartisan Joe Fleckenstein 21.9% 1,033
Total Votes 4,715
Source: Maryland State Board of Elections, "Official 2014 Gubernatorial Primary Election results for Harford County," July 17, 2014


Fleckenstein reported $725.00 in contributions and $265.00 in expenditures to the Maryland State Board of Elections, leaving his campaign with $912.74 on hand prior to the primary. This total includes amounts remaining from previous filing periods.[3]


Fleckenstein received no official endorsements in this election.

Campaign themes


Fleckenstein explained his themes for the 2014 race on his campaign website:

Why do I want to represent you on the School Board for District F?

That’s simple. I attended Harford County Public Schools from Kindergarten through 12th-Grade, and my experience was excellent.

The curriculum was rigorous, there was daily physical education, you weren’t afraid of being attacked at school, the teachers were dedicated, and my parents really pushed me to succeed. I made many friends, participated in sports, and had very good attendance.

Today, in many respects we still have some real positives in our school system.

Yet I look around, and our students increasingly are becoming mandatory test-takers.

Many students today are not being taught cursive writing.

A large number of children cannot read a map.

Physical exercise is not emphasized the same way it was when you and I were in school.

I am really concerned that our kids aren’t being exposed to the principles that made our country great.

What do they know about our first presidents?

Are they being exposed to the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights?

Are our children being taught American History and asked to examine its impact on our lives?

Do our children know what “Liberty” really means?

Another policy that really disturbs me is Common Core, a set of standards currently being implemented in our school system.

The federal government imposed a “one-size fits all” set of standards for our children!

We should have local control of education, not federal control.

Finally, there are many unfunded mandates that need to be addressed.

Will the money be there to take care of these mandates? Where will the money come from?

I am running to bring common sense back to Harford County Public Schools.

We need to oppose Common Core in every instance.

Parental rights are incredibly important.

Our schools should be locally-controlled.

I am supportive of school-choice and homeschooling, for those who so choose.

Do I have all of the answers?


Am I willing to attend every Board of Education meeting, go above and beyond to find the answers to questions, and find subject-matter experts to help make informed decisions?


The Primary Election is Tuesday, June 24th.

I humbly ask for your vote!

If you want someone who will just “go along to get along,” then I am not your man.

But if you want someone who is not afraid to take some heat for what he believes in, then I am your clear choice!

I am not a career-politician.

I am your servant.

I will serve you extremely-well during my time on the Board.

All that I have is my integrity. Nothing else matters.[4]

—Joe Fleckenstein's campaign website, (2014), [1]

About the district

See also: Harford County Public Schools, Maryland
Harford County Public Schools is located in Harford County, Maryland
Harford County Public Schools is based in Bel Air, the county seat of Harford County, Maryland. Harford County is home to 249,215 residents, according to the United States Census Bureau.[5] Harford County Public Schools is the eighth-largest school district in Maryland, serving 38,224 students during the 2011-2012 school year.[6]


Harford County underperformed in comparison to the rest of Maryland in terms of higher education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 31.5 percent of Harford County residents aged 25 years and older had attained a bachelor's degree compared to 36.3 percent for Maryland as a whole. The median household income in Harford County was $80,441 compared to $72,999 for the state of Maryland. The poverty rate in Harford County was 7.5 percent compared to 9.4 percent for the entire state.[5]

Racial Demographics, 2012[5]
Race Harford County (%) Maryland (%)
White 81.4 60.8
Black or African American 13.1 30.0
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.3 0.5
Asian 2.8 6.0
Two or More Races 2.3 2.5
Hispanic or Latino 3.8 8.7

Party registration, 2014[7]
Party Number of registered voters
Republican 67,823
Democratic 62,655
Unaffiliated 29,607
Other 1,215
Libertarian 814
Green 316
Total 162,430

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one or two tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[8]

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