Ad executive running for school board
An advertising executive with two children in the Pasco County school system has joined the growing race for School Board District 2. Donald Stephenson III, 40, announced Friday he would challenge incumbent Joanne Hurley for the seat she has held for one term. Stephenson, an associate creative director for the 22squared advertising agency, said he was running as a conservative who would work on behalf of students and parents. "I do have some concerns about the curriculum," he said. "I would like to do what I can as a School Board member … to focus on maybe a little bit more of a traditional curriculum." He mentioned specifically social studies lessons, and suggested that International Baccalaureate is "anti-American" and might be replaced. Stephenson also spoke about maintaining financial discipline and responsibility, including areas such as classroom technology expenses. He also made clear he would not accept any contributions from teacher unions. Bryan V. Williams, a member of the Connerton Elementary school advisory council, also has filed to seek the District 2 seat.
Chamber names charity winners
John Negley on Thursday was selected as next year's honorary mayor of Wesley Chapel. The race is not so much an election as it is a fundraising effort for the Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce and a charity picked by each candidate. The person who raises the most money wins. Negley oversees construction of the new Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel and chose the hospital's fundraising arm as his charity. Other hopefuls were Mitze Richeson of Cypress Creek Chiropractic and Jan Roberts of Big Brothers Big Sisters. Richeson's charity was the Oasis Pregnancy Center, and Roberts chose her own organization. The event raised $67,000, with $32,000 going to the charities. The chamber did not disclose how much each candidate raised.
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