Community elects King Martin to school board
Incumbent Chelsea King Martin won the Position 2 West Linn-Wilsonville School Board race decisively over challenger Gail Greenman, collecting 60% of the vote compared to Greenman's 30%, according to early returns Tuesday, May 21. Also on the ballot for Position 2 was David Swartwood, who did not campaign for the seat.
"I could not have done this campaign without all these people," King Martin said. "Not just the fact that they helped me to win, but just all the support they've given me to continue on and never quit. I have a lot of gratitude to all these people who helped me."
The race for Position 4 was too close to call when the Tidings went to press Wednesday, with 52% of the vote going to conservative candidate Christy Thompson and 48% to Jordan Ferris, who received much support from local Democrats.
"I'm really proud of the campaign I ran and all of my supporters," said Ferris, a West Linn nurse. "I can't wait to find other ways to stay involved in the district. The students of this district deserve the best."
King Martin, who has served on the WL-WV School Board since 2015, is looking forward to supporting Superintendent Kathy Ludwig in her goals, closing the achievement gap for students of diverse backgrounds and continuing to foster communication between the board and the community. She's also excited to dive into work around reimagining a new high school — one of the projects listed on the district's 2019 potential capital bond.
"I'm excited to hit the ground running on bringing career and technical education to our high schools," King Martin said. "I feel exhilarated I'm honored to have the opportunity to serve again."
After a controversial campaign season, the gears will shift from campaigning to governance and Thompson — who wants to focus on smaller class sizes, support for teachers battling disruptive behaviors in the classroom, increased mental health support, parental involvement in curriculum choices and career and technical education courses — said she's grateful to all her supporters who provided her with encouragement.
"I am excited to serve the students, parents, teachers, staff and administrators in our district," Thompson said. "I look forward to being present in our schools and working alongside my fellow board members to make the WL-WV School District even better."
King Martin said Thompson's done a good job of being involved in the district and attending school board meetings and meeting with the superintendent prior to the election.
"I look forward to meeting with her and I look forward to meeting with Gail Greenman. She's obviously someone who cares about the schools and so I would love to get to know her better and see ways we can come together and work for 9,849 students," King Martin added.
Greenman, though she said she did not get the result she wanted, she feels like it was not a loss.
"I'm proud of the campaign we ran and have no regrets," Greenman, a local public policy advocate, said in a Facebook post Tuesday night. "There is no loss when you come out of something richer than you were before. That richness comes in the form of amazing people I never would have met otherwise who are now dear friends. That richness comes in the many people who entrusted me with stories about their most precious resource, their children. That richness comes in the example we set for our children and the honor and integrity we kept throughout this election."