Here are bios of the six new DeKalb board members. Impressive credentials by any standard.

Here are the bios of the six new board members from the governor’s office.

Both these bios and Gov. Nathan Deal’s comments at the press conference that just ended indicate that the selection focus was on a fresh start and on a board that could work together. Deal noted that several of the appointees have experience in mediation.

The board will be sworn in at 1 p.m. today, so DeKalb can now hold meetings and take action.

As I noted in my first blog on the six, I have seen Thad Mayfield in action; he headed the 20-person citizen panel that reviewed school enrollments and recommended closings three years ago.  I thought he did a good job, and the panel was fair and efficient. (That the school board didn’t act on its recommendations is fodder for another day.)

The statement and bios:

Gov. Nathan Deal today announced the names of the six new DeKalb County school board members.

“I tasked the nominating panel with finding excellent board members who will put the school system back on track toward full accreditation, and the panel performed a Herculean task with a quick turnaround so that the board could get back to work on behalf of the county’s students as soon as possible,” Deal said. “We had many outstanding community leaders offer themselves for service, and the high caliber of the candidates reflects well on the county. I faced an enviable problem: It was difficult to choose between so many great applicants. I truly believe that the board members will do an incredible job for DeKalb County. The volunteers who served on the nominating panel and as my liaisons to the county school leaders have given of themselves, and they have made a tremendous difference. I cannot thank them enough for their service.”

Acting on the recommendation of the State Board of Education, the governor suspended six members of the DeKalb school board In February. He then appointed a panel to nominate replacements and tapped Brad Bryant and Robert L. Brown to act as his liaisons to the DeKalb board and Superintendent Michael Thurmond. The nominating panel received a total of 403 applications and interviewed more than 60 applicants before narrowing the list to six finalists.

The new members of the DeKalb County school board, who will be sworn in at 1 p.m. today are as follows:

John Coleman

John Coleman

District 1

John Coleman

Coleman is a strategic planning manager at Invesco. Previously, he held a variety of leadership roles at McKinsey & Company. He also serves on various nonprofit boards. Coleman has a master’s in Business Administration from Harvard and a master’s in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School. He resides in Atlanta.

Michael Erwin

Michael Erwin

District 3

Michael Erwin

Erwin is a U.S. Navy veteran and has been a research assistant at Duke University Medical Center and the University of South Carolina. He has worked for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Services and is past chair of the NOAA fisheries committees on fish species and fish diseases in Maine and South Carolina. In 2008, he earned a Ph.D. in Biological Science from the University of South Carolina. He has been a member of the faculty at Georgia Gwinnett College since 2009 and teaches undergraduate students in biological science. He graduated from North Carolina Central University with a bachelor’s in Biology and a master’s in Biological Science. Erwin resides in Decatur.

David Campbell

David Campbell

District 5

David Campbell

Campbell is a senior manager with Georgia Power, where he supports the company’s energy conservation efforts. He is a certified public accountant with managerial experience. Campbell received a degree in Business Administration from Albany State University. He is a former chair of Leadership DeKalb, a member of the DeKalb 100 Black Men and an active member of St. Phillips AME. He formerly served on the Stephenson High School Council and resides in Lithonia.

Joyce Morley

Joyce Morley

District 7

Joyce Morley

Morley is the chief executive officer of Morley and Associates and is a nationally known public speaker and trainer. She is a certified counselor, a trained mediator and serves on several local and national governance boards. Morley has a doctorate in Counseling, Family and Worklife from the University of Rochester. She received her specialist’s and master’s degrees in Counseling Education from the State University New York College at Brockport, and a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from the SUNY College at Genesco. A Stone Mountain resident, Morley has lived in DeKalb County for more than 22 years.

Karen Carter

Karen Carter

District 8

Karen Carter

Carter serves on the faculty of Georgia Perimeter College where she is chair of the Business and Social Science department. She received a bachelor’s degree in Speech Communications from Denison University and a law degree from Ohio State University. Carter has served as a classroom teacher and has held several senior administrative roles in the field of education. She is a graduate of Leadership DeKalb and is an active community volunteer. Carter is a resident of the Lakeside Community.

Thad Mayfield

Thad Mayfield

District 9

Thaddeus Mayfield

Mayfield is a senior partner with FOCOM, Inc., a Georgia-based business development firm. He holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from Mercer University and received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Tougaloo College. He co-chaired the successful Friends of DeKalb Education SPLOST IV Campaign and is an active member of several business and civic organizations in the metropolitan area. Mayfield is a resident of Lithonia.

383 comments Add your comment

Principal Skinner

March 13th, 2013
11:22 am

MD,

U r ON IT!

BTW………..I’ll b here all week, Try the fish

kaitsmom

March 13th, 2013
11:25 am

Wow! They have really raised the bar on credentials. I am impressed.

[...] The six are: John Coleman of District 1, Michael Erwin of District 3, David Campbell of District 5, Joyce Morley of District 7, Karen Carter of District 8 and Thad Mayfield of District 9. See their bios here. [...]

Jovan Miles

March 13th, 2013
11:26 am

Impressive resumes from them all. Hopefully they can work together to turn DCSS around.

DeKalb Dad

March 13th, 2013
11:30 am

Okay, this group looks like they have excellent qualification and know what a budget is. Here’s hoping they can work together to get things moving in the right direction in the DCSS. Thank you state board of education, Governor Deal and the nominating committee.

Principal Skinner

March 13th, 2013
11:35 am

Jovan Miles

March 13th, 2013
11:26 am

Impressive resumes from them all. Hopefully they can work together to turn DCSS around.
_______________________________________________________________________________
I like the unique aspect of having an expert on mediation/conflict resolution on the board

FedUp

March 13th, 2013
11:35 am

Wow, talk about an upgrade. Well done.

Tinytam

March 13th, 2013
11:36 am

Thank you so much Maureen for all that you do!

MiltonMan

March 13th, 2013
11:36 am

The governor doing what residenst fo the county failed to do.

worried about the numbers

March 13th, 2013
11:37 am

So far so good -hard to tell what these folks are like, but what’s written down sounds hopefu. ‘Trained mediator’ – that is certainly a good skill to have….

Principal Skinner

March 13th, 2013
11:38 am

There’s probably some humor value in comparing n contrasting the bios of the ousted 6 w the new 6………but instead, I’ll just be pleased w a new direction going forward.

Now, get to work and cut off the legal fund $$$$$ to all the “dead weight”

catlady

March 13th, 2013
11:38 am

This does look like an accomplished group. Why did they apply? Have they family employed by the system? Hopefully they will ask the right questions, and push their superintendent. Also, they seem to have strong resumes for leadership. Will they be able to meet SACS definition of “successful”? ie, no dissention, rubberstamp what your superintendent says? Or will they push for REAL leadership?

Decatur Dad

March 13th, 2013
11:39 am

Thad Mayfield will bring a breath of fresh air to the board. He’s no-nonsense, very intelligent, humble and will place the best interest of the entire school district above all else. Not sure if I know the other “governor appointments”.

FedUp

March 13th, 2013
11:41 am

Even the NAACP should be somewhat happy the ousted person was replaced by a person of the same race. The qualifications of these people look great, so let us hope they can work together and get things straightened out.

catlady

March 13th, 2013
11:43 am

Now would be a great time for a detailed disection of SACS, AJC! The rules, the funding, the meddling, the power plays, etc. I believe it will astound you, if you would just dig it out! As much public money as goes to it, how can they hide behind “private corporation”?

Ajay

March 13th, 2013
11:43 am

They look awesome on paper. I am very optimistic!

Dr. John Trotter

March 13th, 2013
11:44 am

What will change? Nothing…when it comes to what really goes on in the schools. The new members of the school board will go out of their way to be nice in public. The county will essentially be left as a wasteland. No one is thinking this: “Wow, SACS and the Governor of Georgia have really cleaned up the DeKalb School System and improved education there. Let’s now move our company to DeKalb County.” This is laughable. What has changed is this: The State of Georgia has abdicated more of its responsibility to an outside influence, to a private, non-accountable, money-grubbing company which is full of conflicts of interest.

The State of Georgia has allowed SACS to destroy not just another school system but another county. The Governor can name whomever to the DeKalb County School Board…but nothing in the individual school buildings will change for the good. In fact, everything will get worse because, like in Clayton County, everyone will be afraid to even utter the word “pie” because it starts with a “p.” The problems fester and get much worse.

Let’s see now…since Savior Mark Elgart descended from the Alpharetta Heavens upon the lowly Nazarethic Clayton County, its anchor mall, Southlake Mall, just went into foreclosure. Yes, Markie Mark has really “helped” Clayton County. The Piccadilly Restaurant on Highway 85 in Riverdale closed. So did Lowe’s and Publix in Riverdale. D^mn! That Messiah from Alpharetta sure brought industry and big business back to Clayton County. I think that I hear that the Pharaoh Locust Company of Egypt will be moving into the Performing Art Center on Mt. Zion Boulevard next to Interstate 75 this April.

The Plague of Darkness was ushered into Clayton County by SACS in 2008, and I hear that reason that Eldrin Bell was fired by the voters was that he couldn’t pump enough sunshine into Clayton County. Mark Elgart and SACS has ushered in a perennial Tornado Watch. Clayton County was improved like the bombs had improved Dresden during World War II.

Maybe Eldrin and the other Clayton County leaders couldn’t find enough of the “good black people” like the Governor is apparently looking for in DeKalb County. Did the Governor actually say this? This is what I am hearing. It’s all about control and the money, folks. It’s not really about helping the teachers within the individual schools so that they can teach the students. The discipline is out of hand in the individual schools, but we haven’t heard Mark Elgart, SACS, or any Governor mention this one time about Clayton or DeKalb. Not one time. The teachers need to be empowered to do their jobs.

Erica Long

March 13th, 2013
11:44 am

This looks to be a great group of well-credentialed people who are concerned about improving DeKalb’s public schools. Good job by Governor Deal and the screening committee. We could definitely use more than a few like them on the Atlanta Board of Education.

cautiously optimistic

March 13th, 2013
11:45 am

Thanks Maureen! Only other thing I’d like to know is if they have children in the district.

DeKalb County Grad

March 13th, 2013
11:48 am

OK – Trotter and the rest of the nay-sayers – no more discussion of sterotypes. How petty to discuss tap dancing as if that is some domain of one particular race – shades of Ann Miller and Fred Astaire! Let us focus upon educational values. Let us focus on encouraging our teachers and empowering them to lead classrooms of motivated students. Let us re-establish discipline in the classroom. Let the BOE take care of the budget, hiring competent people, auditing and fixing the mess that exists at the Palace. Let the BOE work on re-establishng the accredidation of DeKalb. SACS should be happy that Deal moved this fast and made education of children a priority. Focus upon the education of our children over race-baiting one-upmanship. I was disappointed to see out of all the qualified women on the original list that only two were chosen. I am just thrilled they are all so well-qualified. Thanks to Maureen and the AJC for working so hard to keep us informed.

bu2

March 13th, 2013
11:48 am

Seems to be a good mix of skills.
Mediator with undergrad in education
Lawyer
College teacher
CPA
Strategic planner
Consultant in business development

Mary Elizabeth

March 13th, 2013
11:48 am

Four of the six appointees have spent their careers in the business arena. Education envisioned a as business? I hope not. However, education foreseen as a business model may well be the thinking of Georgia’s Republican governor.

As a dedicated, educational career teacher and instructional leader of 35 years, I do not think education will flourish, for students, when it is run as a business model – the high calibre of these candidates, now DeKalb County’s educational board members, notwithstanding.

bu2

March 13th, 2013
11:49 am

That goes with our current lawyer, finance/sales and education board members.

Lyric and Melody Mom

March 13th, 2013
11:49 am

Did I read that right only one has a child in DCSC currently ?

Maureen Downey

March 13th, 2013
11:50 am

@Optimistic, We are working on that, but I know that at least three do so far.
Maureen

Claudia Stucke

March 13th, 2013
11:50 am

Dr. Trotter, please. We need to give these folks a chance. They seem well-qualified, and heaven knows we need the kind of leadership and expertise that are reflected in these people’s resumes. They have a hard job ahead of them; and just for taking on this challenge, they at least deserve open minds.

kaitsmom

March 13th, 2013
11:51 am

I hope that they can prove that they are indeed an upgrade in a short period of time. Perhaps it is time to start raising campaign funds so that we can get the upgraded members re-elected.

Darlene Disenfranchised

March 13th, 2013
11:51 am

Tucker is screwed. We already have McMahan from Lakeside and Orson from Fernbank : Both part of Emory-Lavista Parent Council. Now we have SuperDistrict Karen Carter also from Lakeside and Thaddius Mayfield as the co-chair of the SPLOST IV campaign of deceit? Does anyone care that the “Friends” of DeKalb lied to the media and everyone else by telling voters they had to vote yes on SPLOST if they wanted to reduce the school board from 9 to 7 members and make them all stand for re-election in year? None of that happened, but they got their money. Now they will be controlling it, too. All hail the new Lakeside City, being ushered in on the backs of our students and with the money from taxpayers all over the county funneled straight to Womack’s backyard. Does anyone care that Fernbank (Orson) also had their district specifically drawn to ensure their man would be elected during the Summer and they didn’t even have the headcount to justify their own elementary school just a few short years ago. Now they are getting a multi-million dollar brand new school which will force others around them to close in order to supply them with enough kids. And how did they manage that? By electing EUGENE WALKER and then voting to spend tax dollars defending him. And by making the NAACP fool everyone else into thinking “South DeKalb” put Walker in office. Big scam taking place right before our eyes. I’m shocked, saddened and packing my bags. There is little hope left unless you live inside the perimeter and have enough money to finance someone’s campaign in 2014. Yuk! Uk! Pooey! Bllleeeeak! Booooooo!

paulo977

March 13th, 2013
11:51 am

Oh well we don’t really want to hear the truth do we Maureen ? Why did you cut me off?

Dunwoody Mom

March 13th, 2013
11:52 am

Dr. Trotter, stop…you have no stake in this and your continued race-baiting is not welcome.

FedUp

March 13th, 2013
11:55 am

Attention DeKalb Voters: The State BOE, Governor Deal and the nominating have done the job you could not do yourself. Please do not mess it up by uninformed voting in 2014.

Don't Tread

March 13th, 2013
11:55 am

Well, they made sure to keep the racial quotas intact. Now maybe the NAACP will go back to whatever nether region they came from.

While the new board members have impressive credentials, we’ll soon see if we get status quo or real improvement.

Disgusted in DeKalb

March 13th, 2013
11:56 am

Thanks so much Maureen. Right on top of things as always. I want so badly to be hopeful but you have to admit that Walker and Edler looked good on paper. And I am very unhappy with the guy I voted for—McMahan.

gsmith

March 13th, 2013
11:58 am

im sorry but i have no hope for change in dekalb, ….. i have mine in private school and i am in the process of selling my home.. It’s a shame because Dekalb ( Atlanta) used to be such a nice place to live, but those days are long gone…… Forsyth County is calling because its time to get out before this city turns into Detroit

Outer Perimeter

March 13th, 2013
11:59 am

Good job Maureen!

Carol

March 13th, 2013
12:01 pm

Isn’t it interesting that SACS waited until YESTERDAY to say wait a minute Gov., you should let the process work.

By the way, I know one of these new members. Has good qualifications. If the others are anything like him, then they made a good choice. Although I STILL don’t believe it should have been handled this way.

bu2

March 13th, 2013
12:01 pm

@Mary Elizabeth
This IS a nearly billion dollar business. They are supposed to oversee, not run the schools. The education background is for the administration. I would be very disturbed if the majority of the board was people with education backgrounds. The administration has repeatedly had a narrow view and ignored their “customers,” the parents and taxpayers. We need to have a lot of people on the board with broader perspectives.

Concernedmom30329

March 13th, 2013
12:02 pm

Disenfranchised, Carter does not appear to be an active parent in the Lakeside community. (her bio simply lists PTA membership.) No one seems to know her.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. I am just pointing out that she isn’t really a Lakeside advocate from what I can tell.

Dr. John Trotter

March 13th, 2013
12:03 pm

Heck, since the Governor and his hallowed Committee can find such “good” people for the DeKalb County Board of Education, why don’t we just dispense with democracy all together in DeKalb…and Clayton…and Atlanta? Or, in the whole State of Georgia for that matter? Yes, let’s just declare that Democracy is Dead in Georgia? No more “Forward Atlanta” for “Georgia on the Move” campaigns in Georgia. Let’s just declare to the world, “Democracy is Dead in Georgia!” We let the Oligarchs choose our officeholders. Voters need not apply. No, sir, we will allow ALEC or Gridiron or the Gentlemen of the Piedmond Driving Club put together a committee to choose the officeholders. After all, didn’t King George III appoint Sir James Wright to be the Royal Governor of Georgia?

Yes, let’s just go back to Royalty in Georgia. The Royals will rule. The Royals live in the Northern Ring of Alpharetta to Gainesville. SACS, the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, Mark Elgart, et al. Yes, why not bow down to the Royal Ring of North Georgia? We had the Bourbon Ring in the past. Yes, the Royal Ring Runs Georgia today. Those serfs who live below Interstate 20 need to be ruled by the Royal Ring of North Georgia. The Royal Ring can do anything without much opposition as long as it’s done “to help the children.”

I am having fun today, folks. This is comical. These modern day Gnostics actually think that they know more than the voters. D^mn! What hubris! What arrogance! Thomas Jefferson and Leroy Johnson are rolling over in their graves now. Someone has to stop this madness! I think that the descendants of the Royals will even look back on this non-sense one day and blush at the actions of their forefathers.

Georgia

March 13th, 2013
12:04 pm

I find it very suspicious that Joyce Morley looks like she very well could be Michael Jordan’s child. Maybe we better do a DNA test before we get too far into this.

RexDogma

March 13th, 2013
12:05 pm

I think this is good. I have never heard of any of these people. That’s a good thing because when I have heard of them that is ususally for something bad or outrageous they may have done. Thanks Maureen.

julia

March 13th, 2013
12:06 pm

Have they ever been in a classroom? What do they know about students with severe autism or with learning disabilities. What do they know about teaching students who are homeless?

Dr. John Trotter

March 13th, 2013
12:07 pm

Forgive my typos. But, this madness of taking away democracy really p1sses me off.

Private Citizen

March 13th, 2013
12:07 pm

Dr. Trotter, Maybe these folk will be smart enough to recognise your “SACS concerns” and you are certainly not the only person questioning what is going on with this organization. The minstrel show type comments are inappropriate. What next, depression era Pollock, Italian and Irish jokes (there were plenty of them)?

Hey Dr. Trotter, you know why the Brits do not make computers? Because they can not get them to leak oil. Only wish it was a joke (ha ha). PS Really, I fail to understand your love affair with the prior DeKalb group, as well as the whole “school board is holy” syndrome. I just hope the state keeps going with it.

“As a kid I was made to walk the plank. We couldn’t afford a dog.”

Private Citizen

March 13th, 2013
12:09 pm

That’s just it. They didn’t take away democracy, they took away a school board.

Private Citizen

March 13th, 2013
12:09 pm

I wish they’d remove a lot more school boards. We’d have a stronger democracy.

DeKalb County Grad

March 13th, 2013
12:10 pm

Enough Trotter. We need to focus on the positive. Stop the name-calling and mud-slinging. There is much to be done in DeKalb. I have seen other school systems turned around with hard work and diligence. I am happy that the Governor stepped-in to stop further declines. Let’s get to work and stop whining.

living in an outdated ed system

March 13th, 2013
12:16 pm

I have to make one direct rebuttal to Dr. Trotter because I think he will NEVER be satisfied with reforms. I found his comments to be arrogant and disrespectful. He is not the person that needs to be satisfied anyway – it’s the parents of the students who attend Dekalb Schools that need to be satisfied.

You have to be impressed with the qualifications of these appointments, and give them a chance to make a positive impact. If this group can’t help improve the governance of the Dekalb School System, than no one can! If they do a good job, then the election process will commence in the next cycle. And if this efforts proves successful, it will speak VOLUMES on the need to completely reform public school governance structures in the 21st century.

My initial reaction is that the selection committee did an outstanding job selecting strong candidates.

Private Citizen

March 13th, 2013
12:23 pm

Certainly this is the brightest day in a very long time for education in Georgia.

Patrick Edmondson

March 13th, 2013
12:23 pm

Too bad business MBA training does not apply to human students.