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Candidates Patrick, Williams Face off in District Two Race for School Board

In the District Two race for Cheatham County School Board, incumbent John Patrick will be challenged by Derick Williams. The Post has obtained statements from each candidate to help promote informed voting (see below).

Early voting began on Friday, July 17, and ends on Saturday, August 1, 2020. The last day a by-mail absentee request can be processed Thursday, July 30th, 2020.

John Patrick, School Board Candidate (2nd District)

"Most everybody has a Mrs. Logue. She was my third grade teacher who gave me confidence and sparked in me an endless curiosity for education. She was a kind, supportive teacher always expecting the best of you and determined to see you reach your goals. She knew education is our bridge to an ever changing future, a bridge never complete and always leading us to someplace new, with new insights and challenges. And now, I have the opportunity to give back and be supportive to all those Mrs. Logues and their students. So, I am writing to you today because:

I’m running to stay on the School Board for District 2 in Cheatham County.

I was raised on a farm. Before retiring from 35 years of public service, I’d worked mostly as a federal law enforcement agent: first as a postal inspector, later, as a Special Agent with the Office of Inspector General in Washington DC. Post 9/11, I served as a leader of the Anti-Terrorism Task Force for an 8-state region and I worked as a Certified Internal Auditor. My job was to audit and evaluate regional and national programs for fraud, waste and abuse. I have experience keeping government agencies more accountable and efficient. I hold a Masters degree in Technology and Human Affairs from Washington University in St. Louis and a Bachelors in Public Administration from the University of Arkansas.

And, now, I am a young farmer…again. Running a farm on Valley View Rd. for the last 10 years, my wife and I have put down deep roots in Cheatham County. As our community has grown, I’ve had the experience of teaching a graduate course at Lipscomb University, serving on the Board of the Cumberland River Compact, and serving on the Cheatham County Coalition and Kiwanis Club. I enjoy working with others to find local and regional solutions to problems and opportunities from challenges!

In January of this year, the Cheatham County Commissioners elected me to serve you as your School Board Member. I am honored by the trust they placed in me. Now, I am humbly asking you for that same trust.

This summer I’ll be talking to District 2 voters about our Cheatham County Schools. How can I serve you as we efficiently fund education while balancing our County priorities; expand broadband internet service and devices to students and teachers (the pandemic has exposed the need for increased remote learning capabilities); and attend to immediate needs like the new high school near the current Sycamore Middle and High Schools? We are faced with so many new challenges today like never before. Again, we are still building that bridge to the future like all the Mrs. Logues before us.

I hope you will give me the opportunity to continue to work for, and with you, to ensure that our schools are preparing our children for a bright future."

Derick Williams, School Board Candidate (2nd District)

"My name is Derick Williams and I am running for school board in the Second District.

I married into Cheatham County almost 21 years ago to a lifelong resident, Rhonda Binkley.

As we have grown together raising a family, I have discovered another love— and that is this community.

I started my path with the Civitan Club many years ago. Then, I worked on the Cheatham County Fair Board and still try to volunteer when I am able.

I have been active on 4 different PTO or advisory boards at 4 different schools within the county.

My children have played everything: soccer, basketball, football, cheer- and that was just in elementary school! As they got older, they played soccer, wrestling, and track for their school.

I have been a BSA Scout master for Troop 458 for about 3 years now, and was assistant for at least 3 years before that. My wife has also been a Girl Scout leader for over 5 years. Our kids have been involved in several Eagle Scout and Girl Scout projects within the community as well.

As a family, we continually volunteer for things like food drives, cleaning up trash on the walking trail, and groundskeeping at our local schools. I have probably mowed the East Cheatham baseball fields 10 (or more) times with my family just because it needed to be done.

I have even brought my kids to numerous school board, commission, and city meetings.

There isn’t anything that we can’t, or don’t do, as a family.

The role of a school board member is very important, and at times, they are challenged to make very difficult decisions; sometimes they are right, and sometimes they are wrong. But I truly believe it’s all for the benefit of the children.

My family is my life.

My second family is Cheatham County."

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