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John W. Thompson | Brunswick County Board of Education District 5 candidate

Name: John W. Thompson

Age: 55

Address: Belville, North Carolina

Political affiliation: Republican

Occupation: Architect

Family: Married to Ruth Biddell Thompson thirty-two years. Teacher with Brunswick County Schools. Teacher with Charter Day School for eight yearsThree children: Erin, graduate of North Brunswick High School, N.C. State University and Campbell University School of Law. Currently practicing law in Wilmington, N.C.; Betsy, graduate of North Brunswick High School and the N.C. School of the Arts. Currently working as an editor in Hollywood, Ca.; John F., graduate of Cape Fear Academy and Brunswick County Schools, N. C. State University. Currently a third year chemical engineering graduate student at University of California Los Angeles.

Military experience: None.

Civic and political experience:

Communities In Schools of Brunswick County, Inc. Board of Directors. Served on the Board of Directors for seven years. Executive committee for seven years. Served as Chairman to the Board two years. Participant in annual job shadowing program with Brunswick County Schools. Brunswick Housing Opportunities-professional member to support affordable housing initiatives in Brunswick County. American Institute of Architects-professional memberBoys and Girls Home-annual supporter

Brunswick County Board of Education. Served a one-year term in 2003. Served on Board of Education for one year to fill an unexpired term. Award of Merit from N.C. School Board Association. Brunswick County Planning Board from 1991 to 1998. Served as Chairman for four years. Assisted with writing and implementing Brunswick County’s first countywide zoning ordinance. Recommended establishment of a long-range planning committee for Brunswick County.Served on Long-Range Planning Committee. Contributed to Cape Fear River Corridor Study-recommendation for an industrial corridor was adopted and included in final report. Brunswick County Equalization and Review Board from 1991 to 1999. Served as Chairman two terms. Served during two major property revaluation periods for the County.

Email/website: What is the top issue in your race and how would you address it? Our schools have made progress but more effort will be necessary. Improving student performance has to include the County Commissioners, local business and other community partners to address the challenges faced by our schools. The Board of Education must focus on continuing improvement in student performance, maintaining a safe environment and remaining focused on every student’s success. The Board must constantly evaluate progress and make changes in what we are not doing well, while keeping all stakeholders informed.

What in your experience has most prepared you for this office? Why? I believe community service is an important part of my role as citizen and local business owner. With over thirty-five years of combined community board service, I believe that experience will enable me to work effectively with other Board members to lead the school system as it faces the challenges of building high performing schools with shrinking resources. My previous experience on the school board will allow me to immediately become a contributing and effective member.

How do you gauge the will of the people? I believe the will of the people is best gauged by actions on a daily basis and not the occasional outburst. In the case of our school system, whenever a need has been identified, County residents have risen to the occasion to meet those needs. In 1999, citizens voted overwhelmingly to support an $84 million bond referendum. This past year alone, over 40,000 volunteer hours were contributed by citizens concerned with children getting a quality education. The will of the people is surely represented in those hours of commitment.