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School Board Chooses Marilyn Clark for District 1 Seat

Members of the Fayette County Board of Education voted unanimously on Jan. 17 to appoint Marilyn Clark to fill the District 1 vacancy and look forward to welcoming her to the board team. She was the top choice from a field of four qualified applicants after significant public engagement including a reception, student-led forum, community input survey, and a public hearing.

Marilyn Clark“Our board team was impressed with her demonstrated commitment to and passion for the success of every child in our public schools as well as strengthening our partnerships throughout our community,” Chair Tyler Murphy said on behalf of the board after the vote. “We carefully reviewed the input we received from our community and felt that Ms. Clark’s responses most closely aligned with those expressed desires. We recognize that board members represent the entire community whether they are elected or appointed, and this input helped guide our decision.”

The board anticipates Clark will be sworn in before the next board meeting on Jan. 23. She will hold the seat until the next general election on Nov. 7, when she will have the opportunity – along with other interested candidates – to seek election to serve the rest of the term through the end of 2024.

Clark is a supplier diversity manager at the University of Kentucky; she previously held similar roles with Fayette County Public Schools and Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government.

The District 1 seat – which represents portions of west Fayette County roughly between Leestown and Harrodsburg roads – became vacant in November after the resignation of Christy Morris. Under a new state law, the responsibility of filling the open seat fell to the district’s remaining board members: Amanda Ferguson, Amy Green, Tom Jones, and Tyler Murphy.

“We are grateful to our community for being actively involved in this process,” Murphy said. “I have often said it takes a village to ensure the success of our public schools, and the residents of Fayette County have demonstrated their commitment and support once again.”

Others who were interviewed for the District 1 seat were:

  • Edward Dixon, a senior decision support analyst at the University of Kentucky and a former state contractor
  • Jerome Higginbotham, a carpenter for Phase IV and carpentry instructor at Bluegrass Community and Technical College, and
  • William Swope Jr., a retired state fire marshal and a former Lexington assistant fire chief.

“Our board faced a difficult decision from among four qualified applicants,” Murphy said. “Putting your name forward for consideration in this circumstance is not easy, and each of these individuals recognized the importance of our public schools. We hope the other applicants will stay actively engaged in our schools and community.”

Contact: District Spokeswoman Lisa Deffendall, (859) 699-1441

Posted Jan. 17, 2023