Since announcing that I am running for Churchill County School Board Trustee this November, I have seen many comments, received many emails/direct messages about all sorts of topics when it comes to the school district.
I have also asked many questions. I have asked them of parents, students, teachers, administrators and just folks around town. One question that is asked of me is: “why are you running?”
So here goes:
1 – I believe that we should all desire to serve our community in some way, if we really consider ourselves part of that community. I was asked by several Fallon residents if I’d consider running for the school board. Though obviously new to the community, I still felt the civic pride in this town that I had to consider it. The desire to serve is one that I hold very deeply. I serve my church in various ways and I desire to serve my community in various ways, one of them now agreeing to serve on the school board. What “qualifies” me for this position?
- Desire to serve
- 7 years experience as a State Legislator in Oregon which included many bills and budgets for K-12 schools
- My wife is a teacher in the district and I care about her and her co workers well being
2 – I believe that “fresh eyes” and “fresh ideas” are VERY good for any situation. There’s nothing wrong with having a new person to give things a new look.
I bring an experience that’s unlike any other current board member or anyone running this year. That is coming from a place where I represented 3 distinct school districts as the State Representative (Assemblyman) for House District 25 (similar to an Assembly District). Each had their own unique situations and challenges. I was able to work from a State position, to help a local school district. With funding, with policy and with personal relationships. That is a position that I didn’t take for granted and always worked to help those districts with their unique needs YET very much supporting their “local control” by not interfering with their decisions.
3 – I see issues with the district that need to be addressed.
- Low graduation rates
- Teacher retention
- Chronic absenteeism
- Low math, writing and comprehension scores
- Lack of discipline
- Bullying/violent behavior
Not all of these can nor should be “fixed” by the board and certainly not by ONE board member but they CAN work closely with the Superintendent to address these and other issues. There are most likely more issues that need to be dealt with, and I have heard many from many different members of the community but I believe there is MORE positive than negative. The Board just needs to lead, not follow….and make the positive stand out more!
The Board is elected by YOU the people of Churchill County. I am VERY cognizant of that and very respectful of that relationship with you the voters, and promise to do the will of the majority of the voters should they elect me. The Superintendent is hired and works at the behest of the elected board members. That has to be remembered by all involved, from the voters to the Board to the administration of the district.
4 – I am not ashamed that I am a Conservative and that my values come from my Conservative Republican ideals. Though that is not rare in this county, it is still something that I hold dear. If I am elected, I will stand by my Conservative convictions in EVERY vote that I take on the board and in every statement that I make. I believe that that is the way the majority of Churchill County stands and that it is the best way for our school board to think.
I DO believe in diversity of thought and will ALWAYS welcome conversations with those who think differently than I do. That’s one of my favorite takeaways from my time as a State Legislator. Many of my best friends in the Oregon Legislature are Oregon Democrats. They presented their ideas and beliefs to me honestly and openly. We agreed to disagree but at the end of the day, we agreed to respect each other. They know where I stand and that I cannot be swayed by a simple argument. They are the same. That brings us to a mutual respect and eventually a good friendship.
I am running for Churchill County School Board Trustee because I love this community and I want to make a POSITIVE difference in it! I hope that that answers some of your questions.
Always feel free to reach out to me by email: email@example.com if you have further thoughts and questions.
I have yard signs that will be available later this summer (as there is NO primary for this school board election, I am saving them for late summer/early fall, closer to November). If you would like one, please shoot me an email so that I can add to my list and will deliver one to you later this summer.
If you have a great location on a major highway/road/street that’s high visibility, I’d REALLY like to hear from you! Again, shoot an email to me so that I can add you to my list of locations.
Lastly, the hard part. Asking for your financial support. It costs money for signs, handouts, business cards and of course advertising. I believe in using local and have already placed ads in The Fallon Post and will place ads in our local radio stations. I can pay for some of that out of my own pocket but not all. I am the “new guy” so will have the toughest time getting my name ID out to the county. Would you be willing to help? It means you have “skin in the game” and it shows that you support what you’ve read here.
You can donate securely with a credit or debit card or you can mail a check by going to my Donation page:
Any amount…..$10, $25, $50 or more would be VERY much appreciated!
Thank you for reading this blog post and for any and all contributions whether comments, emails or actual financial help. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve this great community!