Letters to the Editor

School board candidates receive support as election day draws near

Hurd has courage and intelligence to lead

To the Editor,

I knew Jamie Hurd by face before I knew her by name. We are both Mothers of Boys (MOBS) and frequented a lot of the same haunts around town. But it was not until we started attending the same church that I actually got to know her.

Jamie Hurd is an active member of our community: When she sees a need, she goes out of her way to meet it. Reliable, dependable, and focused are all words I would use to describe her. She has been a go-to of mine when I'm in need of volunteers and I have seen her go out of her way to do her part to make our town a great place. Jamie was a key player last year as we organized our first Madras Community Cleanup. She has played a leadership role at the MAC and has been a huge part of our Community in the Park event where members of Jefferson County are welcome to free food, health care, clothing, and much more. Jamie is effective, easy to work with, and responsive to the needs of our community.

In the Wizard of Oz, Dorothy learns over the course of her journey three qualities that make a great leader: courage, heart, and a brain. Jamie has all three. She also realizes that there is truly no place like home. And Madras is her home. We are the ones who have the power to make this city great; we are the ones who hold the key to our children's success. Without passion, change is not possible. Without firmly planted roots, things tend not to grow.

Jamie Hurd has passion, and deep, strong roots in our community. It is with great confidence that I support her campaign for a spot on our district's school board because there is no place like Madras. Vote for Hurd!

Austin Cooper


Masters is a fantastic candidate

To the Editor,

This letter is in support for Sue Matters, who is a candidate for position 2 for the 509-J School Board. I strongly believe she has what it takes to help our school district to improve. I know that Sue will assure that we have engaged teachers and students, competent administrators and well-informed parents.

Sue Matters has been living and working in Warm Springs for decades. She raised her two adult children in the community and was present in the schools throughout their education in the 509-J district. She sat on site councils for the schools her kids attended to help provide parent perspective to the school district.

She is currently the station manager at KWSO, and through that work (which is nationally recognized) and her previous work at the Early Childhood Education center in Warm Springs, she has acquired many of the skills we need on our school board. These skills, including leadership, an understanding of the challenges our local kids and families face, consensus building, teamwork, and budget/finance skills are all essential, and in my opinion, she is better prepared for this challenging work than her opponents.

On a more personal note, I have worked with Sue to coordinate many community events in Warm Springs, most notably the Back-to-School Barbecue that is held annually to give out school supplies and backpacks to our students. Sue works tirelessly to help create a family friendly event that is a huge benefit to our children. Our children have attended school together; she has always been a huge supporter of all students.

Sue is always encouraging students to do all they can to be successful in their educational pursuits as well as their sports endeavors. I appreciate all she does in her role as KWSO station manager. She has assisted me with numerous public service announcements (PSAs) to get important information out to the community. She has an amazing work ethic that I truly admire. Sue loves to track data and use it to improve how she does business and to the benefit of the community she serves.

It is for these and many other reasons that I am voting for Sue Matters for the Jefferson County 509-J School Board and I encourage you to do the same! A vote for Sue is a vote for our children. Please be sure to get your ballots to a drop off box as soon as possible, but before May 16!

Dayle Tufti

Warm Springs

Matters is my choice for board

To the Editor,

Sue Matters is my choice for School Board seat No. 2. Sue has a wealth of experience working directly with youth and providing programs that create a safe learning environment for youth development. Her commitment to participate in various 509-J committees, her work with the Warm Springs Boys and Girls Club and her leadership at KWSO provide a wide diversity of experiences that Sue will use as she champions student success in all 509-J communities.

Clint Jacks


Hurd's vision and energy impressive

To the Editor,

We endorse Jamie Hurd for school board. She has demonstrated an ability to envision positive outcomes and make them reality.

She founded the nonprofit MADras Runners club, which continues to host events and fund scholarships. Her enthusiasm rallies people around club activities.

Her MAC board experience prepares her well for a school board position. She has been on the MAC board during difficult times, and the organization is now stronger. Of course many people contributed to the improvements, but her involvement was a key factor. She has high expectations which elevate the people around her.

She and her family have immersed themselves in Jefferson County. She truly appreciates the people of this community and sees potential where others see problems.

The school district has taken many positive steps in recent years, and we think Jamie Hurd can play a big part in continuing this trend.

Scott and Kristine Delamarter


Norton has done well on school board

To the Editor,

As many of your readers know, a key element in the fundamental foundation of a thriving community is it education system. While many would agree with this sentiment, far too many citizens dismiss the importance of showing up with their ballot to vote for our school board. Please encourage your readers to do so. I draft this note with the intent to endorse nominee and current Chairman Tom Norton Jr., although a bit of background seems appropriate here.

Ten years ago, when my wife Dawn and I and elected to move our cattle operation to Madras, many of our friends, colleagues and customers recognized it was a more appropriate environment for our rapidly growing business. However, on numerous occasions, we were questioned on where we would send our kids to school. Some even assumed we would send them to private school or transport them out of the district.

Our attitude has always been if the community is good enough for us to live and do business in, then it most certainly will be where our kids are educated. However, all of the warnings from outsiders had thrust uncertainty into our decision. Had we made the right choice on this relocation? Should we have picked Redmond, Culver, or Bend?

At that time, like many other districts in our state, the 509-J had some challenges, however it didn't take long, as we immersed ourselves into the community, to determine that the warnings and concerns had little merit. Although most of us would acknowledge that the district has experienced a few hurdles in the past 10 years, any blemishes are certainly history and the momentum has shifted in a positive direction. The school board must be recognized for their role and guidance in the positive change along with the administration, and our great teachers.

This brings me back to my endorsement of Tom Norton Jr. Our community couldn't engineer a more suitable and qualified candidate. Tom demonstrates the attributes that help keep small towns on a path of progression. He has lived in Jefferson County his entire life. He only left for a short time to seek higher education and, fortunately for the community, he chose to come home to apply that education in a Madras business. He has young children in the system, so as a parent, he understands the needs of our kids; as a businessman, he brings a fiscal-minded approach to the board. I have found Tom to be generous, hardworking, and relentless on his quest to improve our community. It is our responsibility to ensure his great work on our school board continues. On behalf of my 6- and 11-year-old children and their classmates, I ask you to check the box with your vote for Tom Norton Jr.

Brad Gohr Madras

Paving at fairgrounds appreciated

To the Editor,

Wow! The paving project at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds looks beautiful! Thank you to each county commissioner and especially Mae Houston for your dedication to this project. Each visitor to the fairgrounds will appreciate the paved area as they walk through the property. I am looking forward to the paved "track" when I attend the 2017 Relay For Life July 15 and 16. The paving of this area will be such a blessing to all the folks who will be attending this event.

Team Gerke will be well represented again this year with our cousins Robin and Maralee Gerke as the honorary cancer survivors. Come out and join us as we walk to honor, remember, and fundraise to "Give Cancer The Boot"! And be sure and thank the Jefferson County commissioners for the wonderful paved path. Jennifer Gerke McDonald

Gold Beach