Governor releases list of 400 who want DeKalb board seats. Several former state officials and top employees are on it

Take a look at the list of candidates for the six open seats on the DeKalb school board, which I have put in a Google doc. There are plenty of folks on it from across the political spectrum.

There are many parent activists and former school board candidates. Donna Edler’s name is on the list as well; she is a suspended board member.  However, Edler told the AJC today that she did not submit her name but plans to seek reinstatement through the channels open to her. Since it was email submissions, I assume someone could fraudulently submit someone’s name.

Two people on the list worked closely with Sonny Perdue when he was governor, Joy Hawkins, his former policy analyst and deputy chief operating officer, and Kathleen Mathers who led the CRCT cheating probe as head of the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement.

And there are other familiar names from state government, Melanie Stockwell, former director of legal services for DOE who later worked for state Sen. Eric Johnson, and ex DeKalb legislators Doug Teper and Dan Weber.

Also on the list are Emory’s Mark Bauerlin, author of “The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future,”  parent Jennifer Hatfield, Denise McGill, a board candidate this past year for District 6,  Ella Smith, also a former school board candidate, and activist parents Betsy Parks and Faye Andresen.

Cynthia Tucker of Stone Mountain– no relation to my former boss here at the AJC — is a former political candidate for the State House.  Jonathan Weintraub is a  former DeKalb county attorney.

Please note: The Sonny Jester on this list is no relation to Nancy. My colleagues who cover DeKalb point out that this Jester is a parent activist who has served on numerous panels and was vice chair of the DeKalb Education Foundation.

Let me keep looking at the list for other notable names. But keep in mind that there are folks who share names.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

140 comments Add your comment

Pardon My Blog

March 7th, 2013
12:46 pm

Wouldn’t the suspended Board members be automatically disqualified? I would think so.

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
12:47 pm

@pardon, let me know if you can see the full list in my link.
Thanks, Maureen

Bill Roberts

March 7th, 2013
12:48 pm

Also Werner Rogers who was state school superintendent from 1985-1994.

Please save DeKalb

March 7th, 2013
12:48 pm

Nancy Jester’s husband, Sonny, is on it too.

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
12:50 pm

So, you all are seeing the full list? A reader told me he can’t but not sure why.
Maureen

Please save DeKalb

March 7th, 2013
12:54 pm

Yes, I can see the list. Not sure why there is this need to put any more government types on the School Board – we already Melvin Johnson who can certainly navigate the ins and outs of the school system. The better solution is to have people far removed from any conflict of interest that are just interested in doing what’s right for the children and the system in the most financially responsible way possible.

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
12:54 pm

@Please, From my colleague Nancy Badertscher who is running down the list:

“Nancy said she’s not related to Jester — her husband is Stanley.”

And from my colleague Ty Tagami: Sonny and Nancy are not related. He’s not her husband. We checked. Indeed, I quoted Sonny in a story several months ago about the free Ph.D. program Atkinson put in place for her admins. He’s a fairly well-known parent activist who has served on numerous panels and was vice chair of the DeKalb Education Foundation.

Maureen

MsBssy

March 7th, 2013
12:55 pm

Mr. Golden would be an excellent board member, he’s very involved parent and ran for a seat several years ago.

CompetenceNotDiversity

March 7th, 2013
12:56 pm

We can see it – the stark title page with no entries is probably throwing people. Oh, and I read Cynthia McKinney instead of Cynthia Tucker when I first read your post – almost had a stroke.

FormerT

March 7th, 2013
12:59 pm

James Berry is the former Atherton Elementary School Principal arrested in the cheating scandal in 2009. Great…

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
1:01 pm

@Former, Are you sure? Just checked and there is more than one James Berry in DeKalb.
Maureen

Private Citizen

March 7th, 2013
1:01 pm

seeing the full list?

Yes. At least here, logged out of Google (should be the same as autonomous user), yes, the link to list works correctly. If someone can not view it, I would suggest updating browser or installing Firefox from scratch, which only takes a minute. http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/

Cleaned up a Windows 7 yesterday for a local student.
Experience 1. Install new Firefox – takes 5 minutes, works great.
Experience 2. Update Windows Explorer Browser – takes one hour, rebuilds and updates the whole o/s, and then Adobe Flash Player will not load.

Windows – you scary. I got Flash to load / work, but it took an internet search to find out how.

Moral of the story: Use Firefox browser? Yes. Use Explorer browser? No.

Most people will not know what any of this means.

Private Citizen

March 7th, 2013
1:03 pm

I love Cynthia McKinney. Muh-wah! big hug and a kiss.

gsmith

March 7th, 2013
1:03 pm

i saw way too many names on that list from Lithonia , Ellenwood and Stone Mountain and Stockbridge??? Dekalb county is doomed!!!

Devildog

March 7th, 2013
1:03 pm

Like hogs stampeding to the slop. It’s embarassing

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
1:04 pm

@gmsith, I thought there were a lot of names from Decatur.
Maureen

Please save DeKalb

March 7th, 2013
1:05 pm

Sorry – I think I got that he was her husband from The Dunwoody Patch!

CompetenceNotDiversity

March 7th, 2013
1:12 pm

PC – please tell me that was typed in sarcasm font.

Principal Skinner

March 7th, 2013
1:14 pm

MD,

Thanks for the list. I see many people with whom I have a familiarity

Centrist

March 7th, 2013
1:14 pm

@ Private Citizen – You forgot to mention the best addon for Firefox is “Adblock Plus” with optional subscriptions to Easylist and Fanboy – they block bandwidth consuming and annoying ads on most websites – much faster loading and cleaner web pages.

frankie

March 7th, 2013
1:16 pm

uuuhmmmmm gsmith…where would you prefer the names come from? Looks like people who care about the county and the welfare of the dekalb children…

kaitsmom

March 7th, 2013
1:19 pm

So where are all of the dissatisfied people from North Dekalb ? It seems that all that applied are Lithonia, Stone Mountain and Decatur. I really expected to see more Dunwoody.

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
1:21 pm

On the List?

OK the list is out. Time to fess up, any regular posters on it?

frankie

March 7th, 2013
1:24 pm

Isn’t dunwoody looking to start ther own school board, something to that effect i heard on the news the other day…

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
1:27 pm

#Frankie, It would take at least two years for that to happen as voters statewide would have to amend the state constitution first.
Maureen

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
1:27 pm

Real task – who are the Manchurian candidates for the ousted 6?

Apparently NOT Sonny Jester.

Ajay

March 7th, 2013
1:28 pm

Does it matter what area of the county they are from? There are good, concerned citizen all over the county! Enough with the fiefdoms and “me and mine” attitudes.

DunMoody

March 7th, 2013
1:30 pm

Looking at the names from Dunwoody, they’re solid candidates. I’m less concerned about quantity than quality.

Maureen Downey

March 7th, 2013
1:32 pm

@DunMoody, Certainly, this list offers an incredible range. I think the committee has to be careful not to over-staff the reconstituted DeKalb board with former professionals from DOE or the governor’s office or ex legislators or failed candidates for office. There needs to be parent representation.
Maureen

frankie

March 7th, 2013
1:35 pm

Understood, however people seem to be inferring or stating that with out the Northern Cities of Dekalb County that the selection is some how tainted with people who will further cripple the DSB.
Dunwoody, chamblee, avondale and doraville had their chance to be a partof the selection…thay choose not to.
Don’t discredit those that show up…Is any of your names on the list….

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
1:37 pm

Parent Representation? Yes. I’d also love to see some recently retired schoolhouse staff &/or teachers, too. Not talking central office, I’m talking career teachers or perhaps someone who actually ran a school for about 10 years or more & never took a central office paycheck.

Interesting..

March 7th, 2013
1:38 pm

Patrick Ejike is the former planning director under Jones Admin.

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
1:40 pm

@DunMoody Yes Quality not quantity. Just need 1 good one from each, not 15 crappy ones. I bet they are there. Question is will they be picked?

CJae of EAV

March 7th, 2013
1:43 pm

@Maureen –To vet a list of candidates this big would be a considerable undertaking. Given the desire to efficiently move through this process and seat a new board post haste, in, its inevitable those tasked with the decision making will gravitate toward the known personalities.

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
1:43 pm

@DunMoody Are any of those quality Dunwoody candidates “Dunwoody Housewives?”

Sorry couldn’t resist. OK I’ll be quiet now.

Don't Tread

March 7th, 2013
1:52 pm

I’m thinking there are a lot of people in DeKalb County that really wish there were school vouchers now…

No Name Yet

March 7th, 2013
1:53 pm

Is there any way that we can have two Get Schooled Blogs? One for DeKalb County and one for the rest of us?

DunMoody

March 7th, 2013
2:02 pm

@Chamblee Dad … not in this century! (wink) Many of the names I see are parents and teachers. So there seems to a good diversity in the application base.

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
2:13 pm

@DunMoody Teachers, teachers, I want teachers! Well at least 1, maybe 2. I’d love to hear at a board meeting “do any of you realize what the impact of what you are proposing would be on our classrooms – you remember those, the places where the students are?”

RexDogma

March 7th, 2013
2:23 pm

Terrilyn Rivers is also a former candidate who lost to Melvin Johnson in Nov.

DeKalb Inside Out

March 7th, 2013
2:26 pm

Deal also announced that the State Transportation Board member from the 4th Congressional District, Robert Brown of DeKalb County, will join Brad Bryant as a second liaison to the county’s school board to monitor progress.

http://dunwoodytalk.blogspot.com/2013/03/moving-forward-or-backword-in-dekalb.html
“One of the warrants authorized investigators to get lists of phone numbers for incoming and outgoing calls at a Decatur architecture firm, R.L. Brown and Associates. “

Soooo … the CEO of a construction company is going to help pick board members … nice …

Decatur Dad

March 7th, 2013
2:32 pm

The last thing we need are a bunch of school board members from “Dumbwoody”. I think Theodore Golden would make an excellent board member.

MES parent

March 7th, 2013
2:36 pm

Agree w/MD @ 1.32 — parent representation is a must and if the parent is a teacher even more qualified! On that note, my son’s teacher is in the pool. Dunwoody resident/parent/great teacher = Kate Butler

son of awcomeonnow

March 7th, 2013
2:39 pm

What struck me while wading down the list was the clumps of individuals with the same last name.
Some might be due to having common last names, ie “Smith, Williams”.
But another explanation might be that we’re seeing the set up for some more
“Friends and Family” hijinks.
Some of the list leaves one to at least say hmmmm.
I wonder if the usual suspects are up to packing the board. The usual suspects would be
Walker et al. The possibility also exists that MACE is up to what they were trying to do with
Clayton county.

To those reading this: do some research, please. Then spread the word where things
sound like a fix is on. Everyone needs to keep their antenna up on who’s running for the
open positions.

Insider

March 7th, 2013
2:40 pm

Prospective Board members have to live in the districts they seek to represent. There is a large area of “unincorporated” DeKalb County with a Decatur post office designation. Dunwoody is a smaller, for geographically specific area.

That’s why there are so many candidates from “Decatur.”

MsBssy

March 7th, 2013
2:43 pm

@Decatur Dad, making disparaging remarks about others certainly isn’t going to garner support for Mr. Golden. BTW, Mr Golden would make an excellent candidate, college educated, currently has child in the system, 3 graduated from DCSS and married to a teacher. He’s more than fully aware of what is going on particularly in the schools in S Dekalb, low achievement, lack of strong principals, discipline issues, no parapros, and the use of all those crappy scripted programs that don’t work.

Chamblee Dad

March 7th, 2013
2:55 pm

@Decatur Dad What is this, 4th grade recess?

I’ll say this: I’ve had my fair share of issues with Dunwoody (heck, with Chamblee from time to time as well) but if someone from Dunwoody is named as my district’s board member, and is really dedicated to helping to fix this system for all of DeKalb, rather than trying to start their own city schools, then I’m all for it. They will have my support from across 285.

@MES Parent If Kate Butler fits that mold, I’m all far it! Teacher perspective would be nice for at least 1 or 2.

DeKalb Inside Out

March 7th, 2013
2:57 pm

Qualifications
What qualifications are R.L. Brown and Brad Bryant looking for? Simple question.

Education, experience, race ??? I’d like to see how the candidates measure up to the alleged qualifications.

Pardon My Blog

March 7th, 2013
2:58 pm

@Maureen – sorry just logged on but there are 10 pages in pdf. Seems all there.

Disgusted in Dekalb

March 7th, 2013
2:58 pm

The list needs to have an extra column with their getschooled blog moniker. Now THAT would be revealing.