Announced via press release:
The Howard County Education Association (HCEA), Howard County’s largest union representing over 7,000 employees, is pleased to announce its recommendation of Antonia Watts, Jolene Mosley, and Cindy Vaillancourt for the Howard County Board of Education districts 2, 3 and 5 respectively. HCEA’s representative council overwhelmingly recommended these three candidates but declined to make recommendations for candidates in Districts 1 and 4.
“Our members saw this election as a chance to hold the current Board of Education accountable, and to recommend candidates who will partner with us to forcefully advocate for needed funding for our schools. All of these candidates bring diverse experiences with them, but they share a commitment to uplifting the voice of educators, especially in tough economic times,” said Colleen Morris, HCEA President.
To be considered, candidates completed questionnaires and participated in interviews with rank-and-file members of HCEA. Recommendations were finalized by HCEA’s Government Relations Committee, received concurrence from the union’s Board of Directors and was voted on by the union’s Representative Assembly last week, which includes Association leaders from all schools and worksites across Howard County.
“We are thrilled to have so many candidates apply for our organization’s recommendation this year, and our members are excited and motivated to get to work to elect these candidates in their respective districts,” said Rebecca Otte, a 4th grade teacher at Fulton Elementary School and Chair of the union’s Government Relations Committee.
“Our members are excited to recommend fellow educator and engineer Antonia Watts for District 3. She brings tremendous experience as a classroom teacher, a Howard County parent, and as a current trustee for the Howard County Library. Our members were particularly impressed by her campaign’s call to listen to and unify our community, her vision for a diverse, equitable, and inclusive school system, and her commitment to educators as more than mere employees.”
“Jolene Mosley is the clear choice for District 3. Our Board of Education will be well-served by Jolene, who is already well-versed with the challenges our school system faces. We are particularly impressed by Jolene’s thoughtful approach to addressing the challenges of ongoing development in the county, as well as her commitment to equity and meaningful community involvement.”
“Cindy Vaillancourt won our organization’s recommendation in 2016, and she is the clear choice of educators for District 5. Cindy has a proven track record of support for our public schools. She has consistently stood up for educators when it counted most. In this race, she is turning her attention to our students with individualized needs, and toward addressing declining educator well-being and morale.”
Incumbent members of the Board of Education running to represent their councilmanic districts did not receive HCEA’s endorsement for the 2020 General Election.
“It is a reminder to elected officials that our members pay close attention to what our elected officials say and do. We have seen first-hand how those decisions impact our schools and our students, and we will continue to hold elected officials accountable to their promises.” Morris said.
For more information, contact Colleen Morris, HCEA President (410) 997-3440