From EduKalb.org: Dear Neighbor: On July 31, residents of DeKalb County Schools Districts 2, 4, 6, and 8 will go to the polls to elect members of the Board of Education. We do not have to tell you the importance of this election. As the district deals with unprecedented budget deficits and related cuts, all which potentially threaten classroom performance, it is important that men and women are elected who give our children the best opportunity to succeed. In the days ahead, eduKALB will be profiling the 12 candidates that have qualified for seats on the Board of Education. These profiles and additional information will also be listed on the edukalb website - www.edukalb.org. I also invite you to stay tuned for information on our upcoming education forum which is slated for early July. Lastly, I encourage you to support eduKALB by sharing our information with your neighbors and contributing monetarily as your budget allows. Contributions will allow us to better promote the candidates we believe give our system the best chance for success. Yours for a high achieving school district, Board of Members of eduKALB
Meet Your Candidates
There are 12 candidates who have filed and legally qualified to run for DeKalb School Board District seats # 2, 4, 6, and 8. eduKALB has reached out to all candidates and incumbents alike, seeking their biographical detail, professional resumes and distributing a candidate survey of some of the top issues facing public education in DeKalb County.
In this weeks edition, we are profiling candidates for District 2.
Mr. Don McChesney -
District 2 INCUMBENT
Donald E. 'Don' McChesney was elected in 2008, and officially sworn into office January 6, 2009. Mr. McChesney represents the 2nd District, which includes Cross Keys and Druid Hills High Schools, Shamrock Middle School, Ashford Park, Briar Vista, Fernbank, Laurel Ridge, McLendon, Medlock, Montclair, Sagamore Hills, and Woodward Elementary Schools.
Mr. McChesney is a retired educator, having taught in the public school system for 34 years. A product of DeKalb County School System, he attended W.D. Thompson, Briar Vista, and Kittredge Elementary schools. Mr. McChesney graduated from Briarcliff High School. He received both a Bachelors of Arts in History, and a Masters in Education from Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia. He taught in Atlanta Public Schools during the era of desegregation. Hired by former DeKalb Superintendent James R. Hallford, Mr. McChesney taught U.S. History and coached baseball at Tucker and Shamrock High Schools for 13 years. He moved into Gwinnett County with an opportunity at Meadowcreek High School, which would become the second most diverse school in Georgia, where he taught for 14 years before moving to Parkview High School. During his teaching and coaching careers, Mr. McChesney received the dedication of the Shamrock yearbook, was selected Parkview's most inspirational teacher in a student essay contest, and served as President of Gwinnett Dugout Club in 2000. Mr. McChesney also was selected to Who's Who Among America's Teachers. He is married to Melinda, his wife of 37 years.
For more information, visit www.donfordekalb.com/
Mr. Marshall Orson -
District 2 CANDIDATE
Marshall D. Orson is a co-founder and partner in consulting firm Melbourne Partners, which provides business development services for transactions related to intellectual property licensing, acquisitions, and partnerships, with a specific focus on content. He also was a co-founder and partner in the media strategy and crisis management firm, Devonwood Media.
From 1989 to 2001, Marshall worked at Turner Broadcasting, including five years as Vice President and General Manager of the Turner Trade Group ("TTG"). TTG is the world's largest media company-owned trade business; Marshall oversaw its multi-million dollar global media sales deals and retail operations, and all business and legal issues. Marshall also held a number of business positions at Turner focusing on content creation, use, acquisition and disposition, including stints as Vice President for Turner Home Entertainment (new media, video, educational products, licensing and merchandising and retail), Turner Publishing (books) and Turner Original Productions (documentaries). He joined Turner's legal department in 1989, initially with responsibility for overseeing deals related to its motion picture library and ultimately oversaw selected multi-million dollar production deals and due diligence projects related to Turner corporate acquisitions.
Prior to joining Turner, Marshall practiced law in the Atlanta office of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky and Walker, after serving as a judicial law clerk for U.S. District Court Judge R. Allen Edgar in the Eastern District of Tennessee. He is a graduate of the Duke University School of Law (Order of the Coif and High Honors), where he served as Senior Editor of Law and Contemporary Problems. He also received his bachelor's degree (cum laude) from Duke University. Marshall is a 2001 graduate of Leadership Atlanta and co-chaired its 2003 and 2004 Criminal Justice Day programs. Marshall is a past President of the Unitarian-Universalist Congregation of Atlanta.
Marshall's two children attend Druid Hills Middle School and Fernbank Elementary in DeKalb County, where they are preparing to enter the 7th and 5th grades. Marshall attended public school in Miami, Florida in the Dade County Public Schools where his mother was both a teacher and a school psychologist. Marshall has a long history of working to support and reform public education, and to improve opportunities for children, including service on:
The Emory-Lavista Parent Council where he currently is Co-President (DeKalb's largest parent council).
The Fernbank Elementary School Council which he currently chairs.
The Druid Hills Middle School Council which he currently chairs.
The board of directors of Provost Academy of Georgia, a start-up Georgia virtual charter high school.
The board of directors of APPLE Corps (Atlanta's original local education fund) from 1986 to 2003 (including six years as chair or vice-chair). Marshall subsequently served on the board of the Atlanta Committee for Public Education and was a member of the founding committee of Great Schools Atlanta.
The board of directors of the Public Education Network in Washington, D.C. from 1998-2003 including membership on its Public Engagement Committee.
The board of directors of the Quest for Public Education, a music education initiative for the Atlanta, DeKalb and Fulton school systems.
The Fernbank Elementary School Foundation which he co-founded.
Leadership Atlanta's Education Impact Team which he co-chaired in 2007 and 2008, and the 2010 Education Summit committee.
The board of directors of the Atlanta Children's Shelter from 2002 to 2007, where he chaired its Expansion Committee for two years after serving four years as chair of its Advocacy Committee.
For more information on Marshall Orson, visit www.marshallorson.org