Former Bryan County Board of Education Chairman Carrol Ann Coleman has qualified to run against Jeff Morton for the vice chairman seat on the Board of Education.
The position is currently held by Frances Meeks, who decided not to qualify for another term on the BoE again after this year.
Coleman is a lifelong resident of both ends of Bryan County. She grew up in the north end and graduated from Bryan County High School and has lived in the south end for the last 22 years. She served as the BoE Chairman for two terms, 1995-1998 and 2003-2006.
"Serving on the board has been my way to give back to the community I love, and I am proud of the many goals and accomplishments the board achieved during my tenure," she said. "After serving eight years as chairman, I am a seasoned board member and knowledgeable about the diverse dimensions of school governance. Having been a successful leader in achieving goals resulting from issues and ideas I brought to the board, I believe I am the best person for the job. I am an experienced legislative advocate on issues impacting Bryan County and public school education."
Coleman said being part of the board is a learn-as-you-go process.
"Good boardmanship requires the willingness to become a constant student of many subjects. I like school," she said. "Through study, experience and memorable lessons learned from mistakes along the way, I have acquired a hard-won skill set in school governance."
Coleman said she is ready to offer her skills and service as vice chairman on the BoE.
"It would, again, be an honor and a privilege to serve the citizens and students of Bryan County," she said. "If elected to this office, in the interest of continuous improvement in our school district, I would pursue board support for a Parent Handbook, an Athletic Director for the school district, paperless E-Board, means to decrease childhood obesity and promote life-long health in students and means to inspire protection of the environment and creativity for conservation."
Coleman said her decision to run for vice chairman was a direct result of respect for her elders, or "elder pressure," as she called it. She said she was approached about the idea while she co-chaired the ESPLOST committee this past fall.
"While my initial reaction was to run – not for office, but run the other way – the requests came from the women I think of as the godmothers of education in Bryan County," she said. "With a promise to ‘keep the focus on children’ and another to ‘look after both ends of the county,’ I agreed to offer myself for the vice chair position. When three of the most revered and respected retired educators in our community call you to service for Bryan County’s children, you say ‘yes Ma’am’ and throw your hat in the ring. I’d like to thank Mrs. Frances Meeks, Mrs. Nell Purcell and Mrs. Elizabeth Harn for their vote of confidence and faith in me."
Coleman holds a masters of education degree in school psychology and has worked in adult education for the last nine years.
She is currently employed by the Savannah Technical College at Ft. Stewart’s Army Education Center, where she teaches soldiers and civilians how to improve basic academic skills.
She said her proudest accomplishments are her two children. Her daughter Katie is now a college student and a 2005 graduate of Richmond Hill High School and her son Brock is a high school senior looking forward to graduation this month and college in the fall.