Big changes could be coming to the Richland County School District One school board after this fall.
10 candidates will be vying for four seats this November with six of those candidates filing for two of the at-large seats. Candidates had to file by noon Monday.
School board members Jonathan Milling, Jamie Devine, and Cheryl Harris filed to run again, while Lila Ana Sauls chose not to run this year.
Each of the incumbents face opposition this year.
The scandal-scarred Richland County school board has been rocked by controversy and allegations of misusing taxpayer funds this year, beginning with “JacketGate” in January.
Here are some links to previous coverage of the Richland One school district:
- SC School Board Chairman On Social Justice: Some Will Get ‘Caught In The Crossfire’
- SC Parents Outraged Over ‘Choose To Be A Slave Or Slave Owner’ E-Learning Assignment
- Richland County SC Corruption: Calls For Investigation Ramp Up
- SC School District Accused Of Lavish Spending Recorded $20K Loss On Tax-Funded Black-Tie Event
- SC School Board Chairman Fined For Voting On $550,000 Contract Connected To Wife
Parents in the district who spoke to FITSNews said they hope this year’s election can lead to positive change for Richland One, and less controversy.
Here’s a list of candidates who are running this November. Please send news releases/ links to campaign websites to [email protected]
The district 2 election will likely be the most watched in Richland One as Chairman Jamie Devine‘s seat is up for grabs. Devine ran unopposed in the 2016 election.
We could not find a campaign press release for Devine announcing his candidacy, however. According to his bio:
“Jamie L. Devine is president and CEO of Community Assistance Provider, Inc. He attended Benedict College where he received a bachelor of arts degree in English…He is married to Columbia City Councilwoman Tameika Isaac Devine, and they reside in downtown Columbia. They have two daughters and one son, Tamia, Jade and Jameson.”
Jacquelyn Hurston will be vying for Devine’s seat this November.
According to Hurston’s bio:
“A retired schoolteacher, Hurston taught at Heyward Gibbes Middle School, a District One, Seat 2 school, and in Orangeburg County. She holds a Doctor of Ministry degree as well as a Master of Christian Education, a Master of Divinity and an undergraduate degree in English Education from Florida Memorial University. A resident of Richland County for 16 years, she currently serves as Senior Pastor of Piney Grove African Methodist Episcopal Church. She has one adult son and is a proud golden member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Rev. Hurston is very active in the Columbia District AME Church and with the Seventh Episcopal District Christian Education team.”
Below is Hurston’s news release announcing her candidacy:NEWS-RELEASE-Hurston
District 4 (Lower Richland)
For the first time in years, incumbent Cheryl Harris has competition for her district four seat with newcomer Shannon Williams.
Harris has held this position since 2012.
Harris did not send FITSNews a press release announcing her candidacy, but here’s her bio:
“Cheryl Harris has over 22 years of business experience with expertise in human resources. She currently works on special projects as a Human Resource Generalist Specialist for various clients. She is a proud product of this district and has served as a volunteer for over 13 years prior to her being elected in 2012.
She has a master’s degree in business administration from South University. She is married to Robert Harris, and they have four children: Megan, Chandel, Evani and Robert Jordan.”
Shannon Williams is a retired police sergeant and businesswoman.
“After a career as a police officer for the City of Columbia, Williams owns a small business with her husband of 16 years, Andre Williams. They have three children, reside in Lower Richland and are active in St. John Baptist Church. Williams is also a volunteer in Richland One, serving as SIC Chair at her daughter’s elementary school and an active participant in the PTO.”NEWS-RELEASE-WILLIAMS-FINAL
Six candidates have filed for two of the at-large seats in the district. Jonathan Milling is the only incubant in the at-large race.
Milling won a special election in December 2019 when board member Darel Black vacated his seat.
Milling is an attorney and small business owner at Milling Law Firm.MILLING
According to her website:
“Angela was born, raised and still lives in the Greenview Community of Columbia. Before graduating from Benedict College in 1998 with a degree in Elementary education, she attended Greenview Elementary, W.G. Sanders Middle, and W. J. Keenan High School. She is a life-long advocate of Richland School District #1 and her two children, Layla and Carter are now walking the same halls she once did.”
Raquel Richardson Thomas announced her candidacy early. Here is her bio from her website:
“Raquel has dedicated her life to enriching, empowering and equipping women and children to live their best lives. She is the author of six books, to include Shifting into Purpose: The Journey to Entrepreneurship a workbook for novice entrepreneurs and Wizzieville Adventures; a 4 book children’s series about siblings who find fun and creative ways to earn money, help their friends and serve the community!
As a community builder, Raquel has been recognized by the National Association of Professional Women as the VIP Woman of the Year and earned an Award of Achievement and has been recognized by SC Black Pages as a Top 20 Under 40 young Professionals. Raquel also served as a director of Emerge SC, the Keenan High School Advisory Board, is a mentor at the Department of Juvenile Justice and lends her time and expertise towards various others student based organizations and initiatives.”raquel-thomas-media-kit
The following candidates are also running for the At-Large Richland One seat (these candidates did not send FITSNews information about their campaign/ did not have websites about themselves at the time of publication):
- John Adams
- Shea Harley
- Tamika Myers
To find out which voting district you’re in, visit SCVotes.org.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR..
Mandy Matney is the news director at FITSNews. She’s an award-winning journalist from Kansas who has worked for newspapers in Missouri, Illinois, and South Carolina before making the switch to FITS. She currently lives on Hilton Head Island where she enjoys beach life. Mandy also hosts the Murdaugh Murders podcast. Want to contact Mandy? Send your story ideas, comments, suggestions and tips to [email protected].
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