FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) - Two former Bevin administration officials were among those named to the Kentucky Board of Education on Monday.
Hal Heiner, who had been Secretary of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet, resigned that position to accept the board appointment.
“It has been a highlight of my career to serve as Secretary of the Education and Workforce Cabinet,” said Heiner in a news release. “Kentucky has made incredible strides in the areas of workforce readiness and education during these last two-and-a-half years, and I am confident that that gains will continue to be made.”
Heiner, who also served eight years on Louisville Metro Council, said there is still much work to be done.
“Test scores and other academic achievement indicators must be improved across the state, and I look forward to working with the Board to provide all Kentucky students, regardless of wealth or zip code, with educational opportunities designed to meet their specialized learning needs and prepare them for success in college and careers.”
Another new appointee is Amanda Stamper of Lexington, public relations director for Anthem, Inc., and Bevin’s former communications director. She previously served as director of communications for Asbury Theological Seminary and as a communications specialist for Lexmark International.
Other new State Board of Education members are:
· Kathy Gornick of Lexington, the retired co-founder and president of Thiel Audio, a high-performance audio equipment manufacturer which she helped launch in 1977.
· Tracey Cusick of Union, a mother of 10 children who presently serves as the parental advisor to the Kentucky Board of Education.
· Joe Papalia of Louisville, an entrepreneur and the chief executive officer of Munich Welding and Deposition Technology Innovations.
· Laura Timberlake of Ashland, the chief operating officer for Big Sandy Distribution/Big Sandy Superstores, a large furniture store chain with more than 600 employees and 16 locations.
· Ben Cundiff of Cadiz, who was first appointed by Gov. Bevin in May 2016 to fill an unexpired term. He has been the owner/operator of Cundiff Farms since 1967 and was a practicing attorney from 1973-1991.
· Dr. Gary Houchens of Bowling Green, an associate professor in the Department of Educational Administration, Leadership and Research at Western Kentucky University and a former public school teacher, principal and teacher development coordinator.
· Alesa G. Johnson of Somerset, the chief workforce solutions officer for Somerset Community College and a former engineering and operations superintendent for ExxonMobil.
All the appointees’ terms will expire in April 2022, except for Stamper and Papalia, whose terms end in April 2020. They were named to fill the unexpired terms of Houchens and Johnson, who received new four-year terms.