2 TISD board positions contested

Published on Tuesday, 11 March 2014 00:08 - Written by EMILY GUEVARA eguevara@tylerpaper.com

Some Tyler ISD voters will have the opportunity to decide two board positions during an upcoming election.

Single Member Districts 2 and 5 are contested and will be on the May 10 ballot. Only one candidate filed for Single Member District 4.

The candidates elected to serve as Single Member District 2 and 4 trustees will be elected to full three-year terms.

The Single Member District 5 election is to fill an unexpired term, which ends in May 2015.

Tyler resident Barbara A. Smith and Tyler pastor Ross Strader have filed to run for District 5 trustee. District 5 is located in the southeast portion of the district stretching east of Loop 323 and west to South Broadway Avenue.

The Rev. Orenthia D. Mason and businessman Cedrick L. Granberry Sr. filed to run for District 2 trustee. District 2 is located in north central Tyler.

Retired Tyler educator Dr. Patricia A. Nation is the only person who filed to run for District 4 trustee. District 4 spans much of the western portion of the district outside of Loop 323.

Monday was the last day to file for the District 5 position and Feb. 28 was the last day to file for the District 2 and District 4 positions.

Dr. Nation, 63, said she filed to run because she wants to help in any way she can and believes her 27 years of public school education experience would serve the school board well.

Dr. Nation started her teaching career in TISD at Hubbard Middle School and taught in Killeen and Van school districts before moving into administration.

In administration, she worked at Winona Elementary School and in New Summerfield ISD. She retired in July.

“I’ve always had a love for kids,” she previously said. “I always felt like education was my calling.”

In Single Member District 2, Granberry faces three-term incumbent Rev. Mason. Rev. Mason, 61, serves as board president. She previously said that if elected this would be her fourth and final term.

“There’s still work undone and education is my love, my joy and I want to see us continue in the direction we’re working in,” Rev. Mason said.

When she is not serving on the school board, she works as Texas College’s director of alumni affairs and external relations. She retired from TISD after 30 years in education, 20 of those as an elementary school principal.

Granberry, 38, said he is running because of his desire to be engaged in the educational system and to encourage other parents to do the same.

Granberry has been part of the Parent Teacher Associations at Ramey and Jones elementary schools, Boulter Middle School and John Tyler High School.

He also served on the No More Excuses, Tyler ISD! Coalition, which opposed the district’s 2013 bond.

“I’m not running for this position because (Rev. Mason) hasn’t been effective,” he said. “I’m not taking anything away from her, but what I am saying is my generation, being parents and having children in the district … I really have a multifaceted perspective.”

In District 5, Strader is the incumbent having been in the office since December. The school board appointed him to fill the role after Brad Spradlin resigned.

Strader, 42, senior pastor at Bethel Bible Church, said he and his wife, Leslie, love the Tyler community and want to do everything they can to support it. If elected, he said he would bring to the table his perspective as a father and experience as a community leader.

“I really just want to contribute in the best way to what the board’s already done,” he previously said. “I think the board has a great plan. I think Mr. Mooring has a great plan and I want to be there in full support of that plan.”

Ms. Smith, 66, is a former educator and mother of seven children, six of whom attended TISD schools.

“I saw the impact that TISD had on my children,” she previously said. “So, I want to invest in other children.”

She taught at Bishop T.K. Gorman Regional Catholic School for five years and substituted in TISD for about 20 years. She said she has a passion for education.

“I believe in the spirit of excellence,” she said. “A child can do whatever they want to do.”

Early voting is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 28 through May 2 and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. May 5 to 6. Election Day is May 10 with polls open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.