PERRY -- As expected, the Houston County school board named a pair of interim members at Tuesday’s meeting.
Lori Johnson will represent District 2, while Dave Crockett will represent District 3.
Johnson, who owns a State Farm insurance agency in Warner Robins, has three sons in the Houston County School System -- Payton is a senior at Houston County High, Mitchell is a sophomore and Brock is in second grade at Lake Joy Primary School. Additionally, she worked in the Barrow County school district in Georgia and the Greenville County schools in South Carolina with a master’s degree in education from the University of Georgia.
“It’s definitely an honor to be chosen by the board, and I look forward to working with them,” she said.
In addition to her experience in education and as a parent, Johnson said her time as a local business owner made her even more invested in the success of public schools.
“I know how important the schools are to the local economy,” she said.
That varied experience and a “great personality” will make Johnson an asset to the board, said board member Hoke Morrow. He was elected last fall to fill one of the board’s at-large positions and said he was “excited” to start working with his new colleagues.
“I think she brings diversity,” Morrow said. “She’s been on the education side as well as the business side.”
For residents of Perry, which District 3 covers, Crockett’s name might be a familiar one. He was the football coach at Perry High School from 1979 to 1983 and also served as athletic director there for five years. That stint came in the middle of a 30-year stretch of full-time work in the county that included classroom teaching and even administration.
Since his retirement, he’s come back for other roles including interim principal at Hilltop Elementary and assistant principal at Bonaire Middle School.
“I think it’s valuable having those experiences, being able to share with the board some of those experiences,” Crockett said.
Morrow was one of his Crockett’s players at Perry High in the early 1980s and said that long-term connection to the southern portion of the county would help Crockett.
“He’s going to support Perry; he already does,” Morrow said. “It’s going to be exciting.”
Both seats will be up for election on March 1, with the winner of those races set to finish out the unexpired term of each seat. District 2’s winner will hold a seat until 2018, but the District 3 term ends in 2016. Because of that, Crockett’s spot would be up for another election in May 2016.
Johnson and Crockett both indicated they were interested in running for their seats in March, and Crockett said the next few months would give them valuable experience.
“Being able to work and learn how the board operates and see how things go and see how the system works,” he said.
The board will next gather at its regular monthly meeting on September 8 at 1 p.m. There will be no work session for September because of Labor Day.
To contact writer Jeremy Timmerman, call 744-4331 or find him on Twitter@MTJTimm.