On Feb. 14, Henryetta school district voters will be selecting two people to serve on the school board. Candidates include James Williams and Casey Dale Jones (both incumbents) and David Bullard and Gary Clason.
Here are their individual biographies:
James Williams is wanting to be re-elected to the Henryetta school board. He has held that post since 2011 and currently serves as president of the board.
Williams is director of the Muscogee Creek nation Environmental Services. He graduated from Henryetta Public School in 1976. He and his wife Carol have six children, all six having attended and graduated from Henryetta Public Schools as well. James is also a proud grandfather of seven.
He has served on a number of civic and community boards including coaching Henryetta Little League baseball and football for over 20 years, Henryetta Dugout Club and Henryetta Takedown Club; Oklahoma United Methodist Conference Board of Laity and Board of Discipleship & Ministry, Henryetta First United Methodist Church Lay Leader and Trustee; member of the Gideon's Okmulgee Camp; and Muscogee Creek Nation Energy Steering Committee and the Environmental Protection Agency Pesticide Program Board.
Williams pointed out since being on the school board, “the citizens of Henryetta and Henryetta Public Schools has accomplished passing a $8.5 million school bond issue, which was needed to upgrade curriculum for increased student preparedness for higher education or vocational training. It has allowed for construction of additional buildings and classrooms to decrease class size, increase the safety of our children with safe rooms and security systems, and proceed with plans for the new STEM Program - all of which is beneficial for our students, teachers, and the future of Henryetta.”
Casey Dale Jones
Casey Dale Jones is a candidate for the Henryetta school board seat 4 in the Feb. 14 election. He has been in that position since appointment in 2016 to fill out an unexpired term.
Jones was born and raised in Henryetta, graduating from HHS in 1999. He graduated from Northeastern State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Occupation Safety. He was employed as electronic games analyst with One Fire Casino in Okmulgee then promoted to the post of Business Strategy Manager where he assisted the General Manager with revenue generating aspects of the casino. He is currently the Operations Manager position at the Okemah Casino.
He and his wife Leslie are the parents of two children, a son in kindergarten and a two-year-old daughter.
Jones has been the coach of his son’s little league team for the past three years and been a volunteer for the Henryetta Youth Baseball Softball Association and a volunteer coach for the Henryetta High School baseball team during the Spring 2015 season. The family are members of the Henryetta Church of Christ.
Jones said he wants to continue on the board, “to see us continue going down the path of providing academic opportunities like these for our students. I want our students to have a wide range of extracurricular choices, and I want to equip them with educators who are willing and capable of pushing them to success. I want our athletic programs to be successful. I think we need to reevaluate how our athletic programs are structured to ensure our student athletes have the best opportunity to be successful. I want to see new athletic programs developed and funded.”
David Bullard is a candidate for the Henryetta school board seat 2.
A graduate of Dewar high school, Bullard currently serves as the Henryetta fire chief. He has been a city of Henryetta employee for 26 years in several departments including 20 years in the fire department. He also is the city’s safety officer and emergency management director, commissioner for the Henryetta Housing Authority, president of the Okmulgee County Firefighter Association and member of the Okmulgee County EMS board of directors.
Over the years, he has been a little league softball and pee wee football coach.
He and his wife Stacy, are the parents of two children, Shelby, a junior at Henryetta high school, and Tanner, who is in the seventh grade at Henryetta middle school.
He says he is “committed to the improvement of quality education, and I am willing to communicate with all stakeholders involved to do so. I believe that members of our board must be willing to listen to parents, staff, students, as well as the community. There must be open communication. According to the Office of Educational Quality and Accountability’s District Profile Report, there has been a continual decline in Henryetta Public Schools over the last five years, across the board, including student enrollment, teacher retention, and the course selections offered at the high school level. These issues, as well as the decline in the success of our athletics program, are some of the issues I plan to address.”
Gary Clason is seeking election to the Henryetta school board Feb. 14.
Born in Kingfisher, he is Director of Nursing at Fountain View Manor in Henryetta.
He served as Henryetta vice-mayor from 2001 to 2003 and mayor from 2003 to 2005 and was a member of the Henryetta Economic Development Authority. He holds both Associate’s and Bachelor’s degrees in nursing.
His wife, Jennifer is currently serving as mayor on the Henryetta city council.
I am a product of the public school system.” Class said. “I graduated high school from Kingfisher High. I have since been exposed to a multitude of different educational styles. I've done traditional brick and mortar schooling along with challenge education or CLEP testing and online courses. I gained my LPN degree through the vo-tech system. I then did CLEP testing to get my Associate in the Science of Nursing (RN). Then I attained my Bachelors in the Science of Nursing (BSN) degree online.”
Class went on to say. “I want to be a member of the Henryetta School Board because I believe in our school system. However I know there is a need for improvement. I promise to ask the hard questions that need answering. I will work hard with the other members as well as school staff. I will be the voice of the students and parents that need help with a school issue.”