Four candidates run for two positions on school board

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Alexis Riga, Web Editor & Staff Writer

Improvement in the relationship between the community and the school district is at least one of the goals for all four eager candidates for the school board. Candidates include challengers Luke Payne, Adam Howe and current board members Carolynn Fisher, and Denise Hinkle. There are two spots up for election on April 5 with each carrying a three-year term.

  Each candidate has his or her own reason and interest as to why he or she is running for a seat on the Warsaw R-9 school board.

  “I am personally running for a seat on the Warsaw R-9 school board to ensure the education and safety of the student body in the district, and to bring the community and district back together,” Luke Payne said.

   “I gave it a lot of thought myself and then had quite a few people approach me and ask me to run. I feel that I can bring to the Warsaw R-IX school district a broad perspective that includes knowledge of the district.  As a businessman, I feel that I have an understanding of the budget process and as a concerned parent of students currently enrolled in the district, it is my sincere belief that I have the ability to be fair in considering the needs of the district, as well as the community,” Howe said.

  “Serving on the board is an adventure. Sometimes it can be up and down like a roller coaster ride, with all of the changes that come, but I enjoy working with the administrators and staff to provide a great learning environment and experience for all of our students. I enjoy seeing students succeed, and hope to be a small part of their success,” Hinkle said.

  “I am running for the board because I felt this would be an opportunity for me to give back to a district I hold dear. Not a lot of people are privileged to be able to hold a job for 28 years and always look forward to going to their job when they get up every morning. Teaching for the Warsaw R-IX District afforded me this luxury. I was also the Cheer Coach and have ridden many buses to games through the years. I understand these extracurricular activities are important as well in building character in student athletes,” Carolynn Fisher said.

  A retired Warsaw teacher, Fisher has served on the board for much of the school year after the resignation of Michelle McLerran.

  “I have the ability to look at both sides of an issue with students in mind, and weigh the pros and cons before a vote is taken.  I am careful to gather as much information as possible to help me make these decisions. I also have the ability to be a good listener,” Fisher said.

  Carolynn Fisher graduated from Ritenour High School in St. Louis, with over one thousand students in the graduating class. Fisher then attended both UCM and CMSC and received her teaching degree.

  “I would love the opportunity to work with our new superintendent to help make a positive change in this district. I would also like the opportunity to follow up on decisions made this year since I have been on the board,” Fisher said.

  After graduating from Warsaw High School in the class of ‘94, Adam Howe attend State Fair Community College for two years and studied elementary education. He is an agent for Farm Bureau Insurance.

  “If elected, I am willing to devote the time and energy that the Warsaw R-IX school district and the Warsaw community so proudly deserves,” Howe said.

     This is Payne’s first campaign for a school board seat.

  “I got very interested in being a part of the board after attending my first meeting about one year ago, after that meeting I was very frustrated as a parent, taxpayer and community member. I then decided after the fifth or sixth meeting that I had to make a difference and knew I had the skills that would help make changes,” Payne said.

  After graduating high school from Clinton as a junior, Luke Payne worked for his father for six years in the Kansas City area at one of the several car dealerships that he owned. This lasted until he opened up Pro’s Choice Marine in October of 2001.

     “Being a business owner of three separate companies located across several states, I understand what it takes to get things done in a timely manner; I also understand the importance of a budget and how working with others on hard issues can be made easy. I also have the skills to bring the community together on issues that pertain to the school in regards to bonds, upgrades, etc, without that support, things will not change,” Payne said.

   Denise Hinkle attended high school in Joplin, and also attended college in Joplin at Missouri Southern State. She majored in business. Now, Hinkle continues to pastor at River Church with her husband, Sam, while also being a current and founding member of the B.C.Y.C. committee.

  Hinkle previously served on the board before her most recent term. She is serving her third term as a Warsaw R-IX board member and is looking forward to hopefully serving as a member once again.

     “I feel that my ability to listen and organizational skills are beneficial to the board. My life is all about helping people, so serving on the board is an extension of the life I have lived here for 33 years. We love this community, and enjoy being an active part of it,” Hinkle said.

   “I’m looking forward to the satisfaction that I made a difference. I currently have two daughters in the district and I truly believe that I can make a difference in the education, facility upgrades, and any issues that might be brought to the table. The student body and staff need satisfaction that they are being taken care of and their voices are being heard,” Payne said.