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Hicks resigns, successor pending

South Boston News
Mary Hicks / July 29, 2015
After serving nearly eight years on the School Board, Election District 4 trustee Mary Hicks of South Hill has tendered her resignation, effective July 17.

Hicks’ health has been in recent decline, causing her to miss several monthly meetings.

School Board Chairman Sandra Tanner shared the news with fellow trustees at their Monday night special called meeting in Boydton. Tanner said the board had a decision to make on whether to appoint someone to fill the ED-4 seat prior to the Nov. 3 election, or else leave the seat vacant and let voters decide.

However, Clarksville-area trustee Glenn Edwards shared his recurring concern about the board being forced to make a critical decision on short notice. Tanner apologized for the unexpected news, saying she did not see Hick’s letter until “today” — Monday.

Tanner later acknowledged, upon further questioning by Dale Sturdifen, that she learned that Hicks had resigned her position on Thursday, July 23, but had not notified the board of this fact.

“Could you have sent us an e-mail?” Sturdifen asked, adding, “That would have given us a heads-up.

“I think that it is important that the people of her [Hicks’] district should have input into whether they are being represented,” Sturdifen said. “The board should have been informed on Thursday so we would have had all the information. That would have given us more time to look into the process [of whether or not to replace Hicks].”

Tanner said that Sharon Shuttleworth, the clerk of the School Board, was on vacation last week.

After saying, “We wish Mrs. Hicks well. We will be sending our thoughts and prayers with her,” Tanner pressed the board to address the issue of the vacancy — telling them they had three options: appoint a temporary replacement, leave the seat vacant or allow a circuit judge to appoint a replacement.

Randy Baisey and John Hazelwood, both of whom are announced candidates for the ED-4 seat, said they preferred for the School Board to fill the seat, even if on a temporary basis.

Baisey said, “As representative to the 4th district, I know you’ve got three choices. I would encourage you to appoint or make it so that someone would represent the district. We’ve got some very important issues that we need to be represented. I would encourage you to make a decision so the people of the 4th district can be represented and heard.”

Hazelwood added, “The board needs some representation. The 4th has been left out for a long time.”

A majority of board members agreed, deciding to seek nominations for an appointment to fill the vacancy.

Anyone interested in serving on the School Board, representing Election District 4, must be a registered voter who resides within that district. You can apply for the position by mailing or hand delivering a letter of interest to the school board at 175 Mayfield Drive, P.O. Box 190, Boydton, Virginia 23917.

Interviews and a public hearing will take place at the next school board meeting on Aug. 17.

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