In a letter being hung on Prairie Village residents’ doors in the closing days of the race to become the city’s next mayor, Serena Schermoly puts her marriage and family front and center.
“I am currently a City Council Member, representing Ward 2, Prairie Village,” reads the opening line. “I am married to Michael, and we are raising two daughters, age 12 and 14.”
While technically true, the letter avoids accounting for a complicated history with her current relationship — and a marital history that puts her well outside of the norm.
Serena Schermoly legally separated from her husband Michael in August 2017 and Michael later filed for divorce. Though the couple agreed to stop the divorce proceedings in June of this year and are no longer actively seeking to have the marriage dissolved, they have not lived together since the summer of 2017.
In the domestic relations affidavit required by the court as part of the divorce filing, Serena, who is 47 years old, reports being married a total of nine times.
The Shawnee Mission Post conducted an interview with Schermoly Friday primarily regarding a pair of tax warrants issued by the state of Kansas for unpaid bills related to her former marketing company, 3 Cups Media, which has stopped doing business. During the interview, Schermoly claimed the warrants were the result of her not getting mail regarding taxes due for the business because she was not residing in the home she had shared with Michael, where she said the bills were being sent. She noted that the warrants had been satisfied by payments of $2,606.59 in back taxes last fall. There are currently no outstanding tax payments due for the business.
Asked to account for a handful of additional court issues in which she was listed under other names in Oklahoma, Schermoly said she had been unaware she was named as a defendant in other cases and suggested the legal actions were against previous spouses.
Asked directly to account for several aliases in the court documents, Schermoly refused to say how many times she had been married, claiming that it was not relevant to her abilities to serve as mayor. She stressed that she had been married only twice over the past two decades, and indicated that while she and Michael no longer live together, they are working to repair their marriage.
She has not responded to multiple additional requests for comment made since the interview Friday.
According to information provided in the most recent divorce records, Schermoly first moved to Prairie Village in 2011 with her two daughters from her marriage to Adam Howard, her most recent husband prior to Michael. Serena and her daughters moved in and out of Michael’s house on several occasions — including moving back to Tulsa, Okla., at one point in 2013 — prior to their marriage in the spring of 2014.
She started her involvement in city issues shortly thereafter, volunteering for the Prairie Village Jazz Festival and the Arts Council starting that year.
She was elected to the Prairie Village City Council in April 2016 and has since served as a council member representing Ward 2.