With two seats up for grabs on the Killeen Independent School District Board of Trustees, one incumbent is running unopposed and the other is sitting this election out.
Killeen native and current board Secretary Kenneth Ray didn’t file for re-election to his Place 4 seat. Four candidates filed for his seat in the May 10 election, including a counselor, a former attorney, a retired Army staff sergeant and a retired educator.
Here is a look at all the candidates, starting with unopposed incumbent Terry Delano.
Terry Delano, 54, Killeen ISD school board vice president, is running unopposed for the Place 5 seat he currently holds.
As a lifelong Killeen resident, Delano, his wife and two children all graduated from Killeen ISD high schools.
Although he’s no longer a parent of a current Killeen ISD student, Delano said he can offer parental perspective. And, he said, his business experience as the manager of Delano & Delano Management allows him to contribute to decisions that affect the financial stability of the district.
“I’ve been on the board for seven years,” Delano said. “I have a track record and I have displayed some votes that I think were the right thing.”
As a concerned resident and taxpayer and parent, Delano said he wants to make sure the right decisions are being made.
“I love the district. I think we’ve got great people there, great administrators and at the same time, we’ve got very serious decisions that have to be made,” he said.
“I just have a deep desire to see the district continue in the direction that it’s going, even though we do have some challenges that we’re going to be facing in the future.”
While some school board members have an education background, Delano said he brings business and building expertise.
In regards to funding, Delano said it’s important to listen to everyone involved.
“I try to set a good balance between the taxpayer and the staff and the student,” he said. “There has to be a good balance there.”
Lan Carter, 41, is running for the Place 4 seat and said her diverse background makes her the best candidate.
“I am a military spouse, a mother of three, a former educator and I like to work with the military community,” Carter said.
She currently works as a counselor for the Army Career and Alumni Program and has been a resident of Killeen ISD for more than 20 years. She previously taught in Copperas Cove ISD for three years.
“Being in the classroom is a definite advantage to knowing how the district works, what the needs are of these students and teachers,” she said.
Carter, who has two special-needs children — one with Asperger’s syndrome and one with a non-specified form of autism — said if elected, she’ll bring the perspective of an educator and parent to the school board.
“We’ve got some educators on the board, but then we’ve also got some business owners and I don’t think they’re as adept to educational issues as maybe an educator would be,” she said. “I’ve got a background that ranges all over the place. I can advocate kids; the special-needs kids as well as the general ed kids.”
She’s also pushing for more transparency and accountability from the school board in hopes of making it easier for parents and the community to participate in board meetings.
“A lot of times things are not put on the agenda that would interest the community,” she said. “Education is important to me. (While) I’m not in the classrooms anymore, I still like to be a part of what’s going on as far as the educational world.”
Aya Eneli, 43, a former attorney and CEO of the training and consulting firm, Aya Eneli International, also is running for the Place 4 seat.
Eneli said while no current board member has a child currently in the Killeen ISD system, she has five children, ranging from 4 to 14 years old and by the 2014-2015 school year, she’ll have one child in every grade level at Killeen ISD.
“I know intimately what is going on in our schools with our children, with all the different policies that are coming down, both from the board and even from the state,” she said. “We cannot talk about educating youth, educating children, educating our students and then not pay attention to the voices of the parents who are right in the trenches.”
Eneli said she’s written grant proposals for educational programs. After seeing the success those programs had in their communities, Eneli said she wants to share her skills to help Killeen ISD thrive.
“I have a track record of success. I’m very good at pulling groups of people together and really creating coalitions that bring about results,” she said. “I have a wealth of experience working not just with the K-12 educational system, but also at the college level.”
Eneli, who’s been educated both in the U.S. and internationally, said it’s important to work with children beginning in prekindergarten to make sure they’re globally competitive.
“You’re not just competing with the person who lives next door to you or even in the next state. It’s a global marketplace and that is a voice that needs to be on the board,” she said.
Retired Staff Sgt. Brockley Moore, 46, has lived in Killeen for more than 30 years and is among the candidates running for the Place 4 seat.
Moore, who is president of the Killeen Area Alliance Black School Educators, said, since 1998, he has been volunteering on several projects and committees that improve and maintain high school readiness, curb dropout rate, promote unity and provide educational awareness.
“Many of the people in the community and in KISD know my volunteer service and what I do in the community for the kids,” he said. “I want to give more to the kids and represent the kids and help the kids in their endeavors to get to the next step in their lives.”
Moore said he’s dedicated to student success and getting involved with the community.
“As the community grows, I have a relationship with the principals, the kids and the parents,” he said. “Public school is all about learning and it’s a relationship, and once you build that relationship with the kids and the parents, the public school system can provide what the kids need.”
Moore said no two school districts are the same, but as a “listener” and a “team player,” he can bring stability to the school board.
“We have a very good school district compared to other school districts our size and capability,” he said. “The superintendent runs the school district from day to day, the school board is there to assist the superintendent operate the school. As a school board member, I have the knowledge and the training and know-how from my hands-on experience with the kids and the parents.”
Marvin Rainwater, 68, has served in various positions in the Killeen Independent School District, including as a bus driver, teacher, coach, counselor and principal. After 43 years with the district, he recently retired as executive director for the career and technology administration for Killeen ISD and is running for Place 4.
“All these experiences with my knowledge that I learned from working with kids and my passion to serve make me the best candidate,” Rainwater said.
He said being a member of the school board is an area of service that will allow him to give back to the community. “An education to me is the most important thing in the world and the most important thing in our community that you can work on,” he said.
Although his campaign slogan — “It’s all about the children” — seems simple, Rainwater said it’s “incredibly complex when you think about it.”
“If you’re going to serve a child, you’re going to have to have great classroom teachers. If you’re going to have great classroom teachers, you’re going to have to have incredible support from the building administrator, (the district and parents),” he said.
And even if everything is running smoothly, if the budget is “out of whack,” Rainwater said none of those things matter.
From funding to state and federal guidelines, Rainwater said board members need to have “a profound understanding of school and education to be successful.”
He said school board members also must have “an understanding of the landscape in which education must occur; an understanding of the incredibly complex issues education faces.”
Through his experiences, Rainwater said he has some of those understandings.