Mike Evatt said he wants to work to get more parents involved in their children's education and improve the public's perception of Hamilton County Schools.
That's why he's running for the school board, he said.
If elected to the District 9 seat on the Board of Education, Mr. Evatt, 53, said he will use his decades of experience working in the school system to help people understand more about the quality teachers, staff and administrators who run local schools.
* Mike Evatt
* Age: 53
* Family: Wife, Rebecca; three children
* Occupation: Retired as manager of building and grounds for Hamilton County Schools after working for the system for 33 years; now works as a contractor and owns Evatt Construction.
"The strength of the community is in the strength of the schools," said Mr. Evatt. "I bring experience to the job."
Karen Farrow, Marchetta Cannon, Gary Potter, Caleb Long and Timothy Stevenson also are running for the seat, which represents the Ooltewah area. Board member Chester Bankston is giving up his seat to run for the Hamilton County Commission.
Mr. Evatt retired from the school system last year after 13 years as manager of buildings and grounds. He worked for Hamilton County Schools for a total of 33 years.
Over the years, he said, the job allowed him to build relationships with school administrators across the system. He learned about the ins and outs of teaching through his wife, Rebecca, who has worked in education for 30 years and now teaches at Ooltewah Middle School.
"I'll be able to sit in the chair that first night and go straight to work," he said. "I have knowledge of how the system works."
Ed Foster, retired longtime principal of Ooltewah High School, said he considers Mr. Evatt a solid man who is knowledgeable about the school business.
"He is easygoing and willing to listen, very open-minded, and I think he would do a great job," said Mr. Foster. "It is always a good thing when you have someone that has been involved with the system. It's easier to understand decisions that have to be made."
School board members serve four-year terms. The election is Aug. 5.
Continue reading by following these links to related stories: