By Allen Kennedy
A very dear friend and mentor of mine, planning for his retirement, once spoke those words you see in the headline. I say them today because I realize two years as KSBA president have come and gone so fast. I vividly remember standing before you, soon to be two years ago, sharing with you about the role models, mentors and leaders that prepare us for the important roles we undertake in life. During my tenure I have met and befriended many who have exemplified these characteristics.
I have also shared many of my life views concerning how as a society, organization or group we should work together toward a common vision and practice good team leadership and membership skills to successfully complete any task.
My life’s focus has been on and will continue to be “continuous improvement,” a theme that has persisted in my role with KSBA. We are continuing to make positive gains in our service to our member school boards across the Commonwealth and focusing our efforts on their needs. There will always be challenges in the future, but our goal must be to continue providing resources to assist you in making things better for each and every public school we as board members represent.
As president, I feel there are three critical issues that are imperative in our work as school board members. First and foremost is our role in advocacy at the local, state and national levels on issues concerning kids. The second is collaboration and making sure we are a part of the conversation on issues that are so important to us, such as the charter schools. The third is dedication to our work as school board teams and the process of continuous improvement for our schools.
I’ve had the opportunity to travel extensively in the Commonwealth the last two years, visiting many schools during Regional Meetings, participating in PEAK Award presentations and more. Some districts are blessed with many resources, while others are not so fortunate. I have witnessed their leaders’ tremendous dedication and commitment to developing partnerships with educational institutions, corporate groups, business and industry and many other community entities, all adding value to our schools.
During the last two years, the professionalism and dedication of my fellow team members on the KSBA Board of Directors, and the association’s leadership team and staff has never ceased to amaze me. I’ve worked with many boards and organizations during my entire career; KSBA is at the top of that list and our mission statement is spot on: “To enhance school board leadership in maximizing student achievement through superior support and service.”
I want to thank each one of you for your tireless and dedicated service to your communities and especially to the children you represent, both locally and statewide. I want to personally thank you for your support during my tenure and your unwavering support of KSBA’s forward-thinking actions. I believe any school board member has a deep-rooted calling to serve, serving not for money or fame but for our children, so they can enjoy unlimited opportunities.
I am appreciative of the Hancock County Board of Education, for its support during my term as KSBA president.
My thanks also go to those who have provided me the opportunity to serve on the KSBA board; this has been a milestone in my life that I will never forget. It has truly been an honor to serve, and to represent you and Kentucky.