Sargeant in, new school board organized

Sean O'Brien elected vice president, Andi Story to be clerk

Newly elected members of the Juneau School District Board of Education took the oath of office at the board’s regular meeting Wednesday evening.


Judge Philip M. Pallenberg administered the oath in the Juneau-Douglas High School library to Destiny Sargeant, Phyllis Carlson and Andrea “Andi” Story, the top three vote-getters in the Oct. 2 municipal election.

Sargeant is the only new arrival to the board this year, and she is, herself, a familiar face. Sargeant previously served one term, from 2007 to 2010.

Carlson and Story, the only incumbents running in this year’s municipal election, are beginning their fourth terms on the board.

Members of the public, including a number of students, packed the library for the meeting.

Departing the board is two-term member Mark Choate, who decided against seeking reelection this year (

Board President Sally Saddler read out a resolution expressing the board’s “deepest appreciation, and gratitude to Mr. Choate.”

“Mark, thank you for everything you have done,” Saddler said to Choate, who received a standing ovation from his fellow board members and many in the audience.

In his own brief remarks after the resolution was read and his wife Sun was given a bouquet of flowers by Saddler, Choate acknowledged those who have supported him in his six years on the board.

“I want to thank the voters of Juneau for giving me the opportunity to do this work,” said Choate. “I’ve learned a huge amount.”

Choate also thanked his family and the school board.

“I’ve never seen a group that’s more dedicated, more committed,” Choate said.

As part of its annual post-election organization, the board also elected officers.

Saddler, joking that she “needs to have her head examined,” acceded to stay on as president. She was nominated by Barbara Thurston.

“Hearing no objection, I will serve one more year as board president,” Saddler said.

Incumbent Vice President Story nominated Sean O’Brien, who was elected to the board last year as a write-in candidate, to her own position.

After Story’s nomination carried, O’Brien responded by tapping her as board clerk, a position held by Kim Poole, who is moving to Oklahoma this week (

Story and O’Brien swapped seats and nameplates as Saddler addressed Poole.

“Kim, I just want to thank you for your service,” said Saddler, remarking that Story has “big shoes to fill” in Poole’s stead. “You have been an amazing board clerk.”

All three officer elections received only one nomination apiece. All three of those nominees were approved unanimously by the board.

• Contact reporter Mark D. Miller at 523-2279 or at


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Sun, 04/22/2018 - 06:49

Battling Parkinson’s together