An interesting name has popped up in the already-crowded field of candidates for four seats on the Douglas County school board.
Republican James Geddes, a University of Colorado regent, has filed the paperwork to run for the board and to set up a campaign committee. (School board candidates also are required to gather 50 petition signatures by Aug. 30 to get on the ballot.)
Geddes lives in board district B, currently represented by board President John Carson, who is term limited.
A surgeon who practices in the metro area and Summit County, Geddes has been a conservative voice on the nine-member Board of Regents, which has a Republican majority but doesn’t necessarily split on partisan lines. (See this Boulder Daily Camera story for background on the politics of the regents.)
Since the election of a conservative majority in 2009, the Douglas County board has been embroiled in controversy over a proposed voucher program, its strained relations with the teachers union and how it conducts its business, including lengthy close-door sessions. Pro-voucher and GOP-endorsed candidates won the three board seats that were contested in 2011. (Colorado school board candidates run on a non-partisan basis, but the Republican Party has been overtly active in Dougco.)
EdNews left a message for Geddes Thursday but didn’t hear back. One question we’d like to ask is if he intends to continue serving on the regents if elected to the school board.
Apparently he could do both. Kristine Wooley, spokeswoman for the Colorado Association of School Boards, told EdNews, “I spoke to one of our attorneys and she said, “There are no statutes limiting the qualification for school director that relate to holding another office.’”
According to the Department of State, legislators are barred from holding other elected offices, and a person can’t run for two offices in the same election.
Geddes was elected to the CU board in 2008, representing the 6th Congressional District. His current term ends in January 2015, so he wouldn’t have to run until November 2014 if he wanted another term on the regents.
Seven other candidates have said they intend to run for the Dougco board, including incumbent Meghann Silverthorn. Incumbents Carrie Mendoza and Doug Benevento haven’t yet announced if they plan to run, according to a recent article in Our Colorado News. Neither has active candidate or committee registrations on file with the Department of State.