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Meet the School Board candidates in the 3rd district

Washington County will hold its county general election on August 5. Included in that election are six seats on the Washington County School Board, three each from District 1 and District 3.
District 2 board members Mary Lo Silvers, Todd Ganger and Phillip McLain will remain on the board.
This week, the Herald & Tribune takes a look at the five candidates running for the three seats in the 3rd District. Check out the July 20 edition for information on the candidates running in District 1.
Incumbents in the 3rd District are Bill Brinkley II and Clarence Mabe. Eric Barnes is not seeking re-election. Challengers are Andrea Hooper, Craig Cloyd and David Hammond.
Brinkley, who was elected to the board in November by the County Commission to replace Danny Good, said his biggest priority is the kids.
“They need to be prepared for the workforce, college or trade school,” he said. “Part of that is retaining good teachers. We can’t lose them.”
He has emphasized that teachers desperately need raises.
Brinkley lives in between Sulphur Springs and Bowmantown with his wife, Teresa, and children, Erin and Benjamin.
Cloyd said running for school board has been on his mind for years, and after a recent job change, he now has the time.
“Children are No. 1,” he said. “Our faculty and staff need to have a very deserving raise, even if it’s just 1 percent.”
Teacher retention is very important to Cloyd, and staying competitive with other counties is a priority, he said.
Cloyd lives in Jonesborough with his wife, Shannon, and three children, Ashley, Dylan and Dalton.
Hammond said he had several reasons for running.
“I have two daughters, 12 and 4,” he said. “I want to make sure our kids are prepared to succeed in life.”
Hammond wants schools to be adequately funded, and get and retain the best teachers.
“I also want to see a more open relationship with the county commission and with the teachers,” he said.
Hammond lives in Gray with his wife, Kelly, and his daughters, Kennedy and Emma.
Hooper has been a member of the board of the PTA at Fall Branch for the past six years, and has attended school board meetings as much as possible.
Having a nursing background, she has also worked on promoting health in schools.
“The biggest hurdle we face is funding and relations with staff and educators, especially helping them to get the tools they need,” Hooper said.
Hooper lives in Fall Branch with her husband, Tim, and her children, Abigail and Andrew.
Mabe, who has served on the board for eight years, said, “The kids are our future.”
He is also looking forward to working with Washington County Mayor-elect Dan Eldridge.
“Part of his platform is new jobs,” he said. “We’ve got to get more funding. If we get jobs, we’ll get a good tax base.”
Mabe lives in Gray with his wife, Jemma, known as “Cookie.” Their two sons, Bucky and Rusty, are both Daniel Boone and ETSU graduates.