When it comes to the idea of serving on Dorchester District Two’s school board, Brian Mitchum says he has only one true thing on his agenda: serving the district’s students.
Mitchum, vice president – licensed relationship manager at First Citizens Bank, is in the process of gathering the 250 signatures he needs to file for DD2’s school board election by July 15.
In November 2012 the Yes4Schools Dorchester Two launched as a “grassroots campaign” to promote Dorchester District Two’s school improvement referendum. Mitchum served as one of the co-chairs.
“I became very interested in the students of DD2 and in getting those new schools,” Mitchum said, “so I was a big advocate of that.”
Mitchum now sees the school board as an opportunity to get involved and make a difference for the district’s students. There are four seats up for reelection on the school board, currently held by Gail Hughes, Tanya Robinson, Charlie Stoudenmire and Frances Townsend.
First and foremost Mitchum needs to get on the ballot; those who file for election have to get 250 signatures, which then go to the elections commission to be verified. Once certified Mitchum would be an eligible candidate for DD2’s school board election.
“I have a passion for the school district,” he said. “It’s a large part of what makes our community so great, and I want to be a part of that process.”
Mitchum currently serves as the chair of the DD2 Educational Foundation, which started in May 2013. Mitchum would like to be able to continue working with that foundation as well as the DD2 board.
He is also a current board chair of Summerville DREAM. He has served on the Bethany United Methodist Church Finance Committee and is now on the Bethany Child Development Board.
Mitchum sees himself serving as a voice for parents and teachers, and use his background to make “sound decisions.”
“I don’t have a political agenda,” he said. “I just want to serve on the school board.”
Mitchum is married to his wife of 25 years, Loretta, and is a fellow DD2 parent; his son Ellison is a seventh grader at Dubose Middle School and his daughter Emilee is in fifth grade.
Loretta is an active parent at Flowertown Elementary and is an upcoming PTSA president at Dubose Middle.
“She spends an awful lot of time volunteering at the schools,” he said. “She stays out later than I do, sometimes.”
Another push for Mitchum to join the school board is to show his children that he cares.
“They may not really know it now but when they get older,” he said. “I’m taking an act of interest.”
At this point Mitchum feels optimistic about getting his name on the ballot for the Nov. 4 election.
He feels his 12-year experience at First Citizens has prepared him, saying it has taught him how to work well with others and effectively communicate.
“I’m nervous and excited,” he said. “It’s exciting to talk to people and introduce myself to people I don’t know otherwise.”