Post Tagged with: "Heather Johnson"

Johnson Withdraws from School Board Election

July 25, 2018 4:33 AM
Johnson Withdraws from School Board Election

Press Release

(July 24, 2018) … Citing the realities of politics in Horry County, Heather Johnson announced today that she has withdrawn from the November election.  The timing of her decision removes her name from the ballot and virtually guarantees that Ken Richardson will become the next Chairman of the Horry County Board of Education. Johnson cited three reasons for her decision.

“First, I tend to be both a social and fiscal conservative – but I filed as a Democrat believing that I would have a better chance to make my case and discuss the issues against a single opponent in November than in a crowded primary in July,” Johnson explained. “Because I am not a politician, I was naïve in that, even if voters on both sides of the isle favor my candidacy, “Straight-Ticket Voting” (pushing the “R”) assures a Republican victory in November.” No Democrat has won a County-wide race in more than a quarter century.

Johnson added that she believes that party affiliation should not be a factor when running for or voting on school board positions.

“Secondly, dragging this decision out another 4 months only delays the inevitable coronation of Ken Richardson as Chairman.” she emphasized.  “I have personally offered my assistance to Ken to serve as a liaison concerning teacher insight and student needs.   I’m hopeful that the Board and Mr. Richardson can find a way to begin working together immediately. Our children deserve no less.”

“Finally, I didn’t enter this race to gain political power or notoriety,” she added.  “I did it because I’m a mother and a former teacher and I am concerned that we are losing a generation of young Americans. Communication skills, fundamental manners, self-value and authentic respect for others are items that are being lost in today’s fast-paced digital society.  I want to use my time, money and energy efficiently to champion change on this front.”

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School Board Chairman Primary Nears

July 7, 2018 5:04 AM
School Board Chairman Primary Nears

Ten days remain before voting takes place in the special primary election for the Republican nomination for Horry County School Board Chairman.

With statewide primary elections last month, the special election has stayed below the radar of many voters. However, the Horry County School Board annual budget is approximately $750 million. No locally elected government agency in Horry County is responsible for spending more taxpayer dollars each year.

Tuesday July 17, 2018 is the date voters will choose between three candidates for the Republican nomination.

The candidates bring an interesting mix of issues to the race.

Retired teacher Patricia Milley is concerned about the mental health of local students, an issue she said she first brought before the Horry County School Board in 1996. Milley claims one in four Horry County students suffer from mental health issues due to school days being too long, school curricula being too hard and nights too short to recover.

Milley proposes less instruction time per school day, more recess periods in the day and changes to easier curricula in the schools. She proposes 11 separate pieces of legislation that must be passed by the South Carolina General Assembly to institute her recommended changes.

Janice Morreale is the current school board member for Horry County District 5. She was first elected to that seat in 2012 with a campaign slogan of ‘Back to the Basics.’ Her signs for the special election chairman race are carrying the same slogan.

Morreale has been a solid school board member during the five and one-half years she has served District 5. However, 2018 has not been a great election year for incumbents facing opposition. While there is no incumbent in the special election for board chairman, Morreale is one of six incumbent board members who voted for a large salary increase for themselves last year. The salary increase issue already cost one board incumbent the nomination for District 6 in last month’s primaries.

Ken Richardson is the third candidate in the special Republican primary election. He is a Horry County native and longtime business man and former owner of Fowler Motors. Richardson has been a member of the Horry Georgetown Technical College Area Commission for 20 years, the past 15 as chairman of that body.

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Four File for School Board Chairman Vacancy

May 26, 2018 4:09 PM
Four File for School Board Chairman Vacancy

By Paul Gable

Four candidates have filed for the special election to fill the vacancy on the Horry County Board of Education created when Chairman Joe DeFeo died suddenly last month.

Three candidates filed for the Republican nomination for the vacant seat, incumbent School Board District 5 representative Janice Morreale, former teacher Patricia Milley and Conway businessman Ken Richardson. A special primary election will be held July 17, 2018 to determine which of the above three gains the Republican nomination.

Former Aynor Middle School teacher Heather Johnson filed as a Democrat with no primary opposition.

The winner of the Republican Primary will face Johnson in the November 6, 2018 general election.

Richardson has been a member of the Horry Georgetown Technical College Area Commission for 20 years.  He was associated with Fowler Motors for 40 years, beginning as a salesman and working his way up. He owned the dealership for the last 14 years of his association before selling in 2009. He will undoubtedly be the best financed candidate in the race.

Richardson has been planning to run for the school board chairman seat since January 2017, when he first announced his intention to be a candidate in 2020. DeFeo’s death has moved up that timetable. Richardson has advocated for an open door policy by the superintendent for all teachers and administrators in the school district.

Morreale was first elected to the school board in the 2012 general election. She was reelected in 2016. She has been a solid board member representing her district well. However, as the only incumbent school board member in the race, she will face questions about the pay raise school board members voted for themselves recently and about why most recent school construction has come in over budget.

Milley unsuccessfully challenged John Poston for the School Board District 8 seat two years ago. As a former teacher, she has promoted ideas such as more recess time for students and a shorter school day. Milley believes both would better help students concentrate during classroom instruction.

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