Welcome to the Official Site of
South Huntsville Civic Association
Municipal elections for the city of Huntsville will be held August 26, 2014.
The most important elections this year will actually be several school board seats. Although three city council positions are also on the ballot, we do not see potential for any shift of the majority vote on the city council. However, the school board could see big changes depending upon which candidates are elected.
The District 3 seat, which is primarily south of Four Mile Post Rd., is being sought by 5 candidates. We are providing you a brief summary of information we’ve gained below. The summaries are followed by our recommendations.
Ellen Brusick – Dr. Brusick impressed us as a sincere and passionate candidate. As a lifetime educator, she seeks to improve Huntsville City Schools through focus on the needs of students. Her view of the responsibility of a school board representative is that it requires supporting the decisions of the superintendent. Primary interests she discussed were those of improving reading skills and supporting neighborhood schools which are designed to serve the needs of each student population. “I like what’s going on in the school system and want to be a part of it.”
Elisa Ferrell – Ms. Ferrell is the candidate who impressed us as fully supportive of the current establishment. She explained that her support for the school rezoning plan proposed by Huntsville is due to the DOJs plan having the effect of leaving Grissom as the only strong school in the city. When asked how the process of receiving citizen input might be improved, Ms. Ferrell stated, “It depends on what kind of input. Input that furthers the city’s plan by way of furthering economic development is welcomed.”
Anson Knowles – Mr. Knowles impressed our Board as a fair minded candidate who sees both positive changes within the school system and areas which are in need of much improvement. He expressed concern regarding inappropriate influence special interest groups have had over local officials. He seeks to change the process of considering input only from a select few prior to making decisions then launching a sales campaign to the public. As an accountant, he also noted the potential for budget cuts in the top heavy central office. “The leadership in Huntsville needs to be reminded that government exists to serve the people and not the other way around.”
Kathie Rooker – Ms. Rooker impressed our Board as an intelligent and articulate candidate. She is highly concerned with both the process and the result of the Huntsville City School’s creation of the rezoning plan that was submitted to the courts. She felt that the plan was designed as a tactic to fight for the protection of central Huntsville. Ms. Rooker suggests that our elected representatives must expand the circle of those from whom they receive input to include neighborhood associations. She would like to see a better balance in the management of funds among schools throughout the city. “Those with a different voice have gone by the wayside and the circle of influence has shrunk very small in the last 3 years.”
Pat Sanders – Mr. Sanders qualified for this election just before the deadline and we were unable to schedule a meeting with him. To our knowledge, his motivation for seeking the office is the need for better communication within the school system.
We are now faced with an unusually difficult task. More than one of the above candidates would represent District 3 well. A run-off election is likely to occur with five candidates. It is imperative that we have the opportunity to vote for at least one of the best candidates in a run-off.
With this in mind, we believe it would be unwise to issue a co-endorsement. Doing so would split the vote for the top candidates and work against our ultimate goal. Therefore, we’ve spent two weeks since the interviews weighing the qualities and strengths of each candidate in order to determine which well qualified candidate is the most well rounded, and will be most likely to interact with the community throughout the term of the office. We sincerely hope this individual will be elected. If a different top candidate makes it into a run-off instead, we will gladly support that individual in the run-off election. We sincerely appreciate the time and effort that is being invested by this field of candidates.
By a unanimous vote of the Board of
Directors, SHCA has endorsed Anson Knowles for Huntsville City School Board,
District 3. Mr. Knowles possesses working
knowledge of the responsibilities ahead, and is committed to understanding and acting
upon the will of citizens of district 3. While much attention is currently
focused on the process of achieving unitary status, Mr. Knowles recognizes that
strong leadership will be of even greater importance after this status is achieved.
Our school board representatives must guide policy in support of neighborhood
schools, property values, public trust, and in the accessibility of quality education
by all students. With a will to stand for what is right, Mr. Knowles will bring
strong leadership to District 3.
South Huntsville Civic Association (SHCA) is a conservative, research, education and oversight organization dedicated to the protection of citizen's rights through the preservation of property values, free markets, and citizen awareness. Established as a non-partisan PAC in May 2009, involvement in our community is based on our belief that citizens are endowed with constitutional rights for which we must take responsibility and be willing to defend. We take issues of importance into the public arena. SHCA is dedicated to gaining the allegiance of our fellow citizens and our elected representatives on important community matters.
Partner with SHCA
South Huntsville Civic Association is growing! Don't let our name fool you. SHCA will always confront challenges within the south Huntsville community because that is who we are. As we continue to grow, we are also being called to address issues within the wider community of Huntsville and most recently in other parts of Alabama. While we maintain our name of origin, South Huntsville Civic Association, we may work with citizens throughout Alabama who wish to form an alliance. The issues we confront are often not unique to south Huntsville. Our effectiveness increases as our circle of like minded citizens grows. We invite you to contact us if you believe we might be able to work together to improve communities throughout Alabama.
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