Malcolm endorses Magrini in Hernando Schools race
BROOKSVILLE -- After 16 years on the Hernando County School Board, retiring member Jim Malcolm has seen a thing or two.
To be precise, he said in a letter Tuesday, he has seen four superintendents, one interim superintendent, seven finance directors, six human resource directors, six union presidents and 13 fellow board members.
So Malcolm's endorsement of either of the two candidates vying to replace him on the School Board -- James Yant, owner of a local insurance company and former chairman of the Pasco-Hernando Community College board of trustees, and Gene Magrini, former human resources director of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- is of more than passing interest.
His choice? Magrini.
"Both are good men and capable leaders," Malcolm said. "Both men have the best interests of Hernando County's children at heart."
But Magrini's corporate business experience -- and his support of gifted education, charter schools, and other programs Malcolm has championed -- tipped the balance for the former School Board chairman.
"His ability to work with people and seek compromise is a strength which this School Board sorely needs," Malcolm said. "We need Gene Magrini's budget expertise now more than ever."
Yant garnered 45.6 percent of the vote in the Aug. 26 primary election, while Magrini polled 28 percent, edging out candidate Robert Neuhausen to win a spot in the Nov. 4 runoff.
Tom Marshall, Times Staff Writer