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Donna Joy is good choice for School Board

By Staff | Apr 27, 2018

We are privileged to have several qualified candidates running for Jefferson County school board, but I wanted to take this opportunity to bring attention to a highly qualified individual who can bring a unique skillset and other attributes to the board if she is elected.

I won’t spend much time discussing the experience and qualifications that make Donna Joy uniquely qualified for the school board. This information can be found on her Facebook page, website and other campaign material. However, I will point out that one of her unique qualifications is her background and education, including a Ph.D. in research, measurements and statistics.

For years, she has advised and taught teachers and principals who are seeking their doctoral degrees. This has given her exposure to the latest research on a multitude of issues that relate to public education. This education and career background also provide unique experience with analysis and decisionmaking on educational issues.

There are other attributes about Donna that most voters will never know about before the election on May 8th, so I wanted to let voters in on a few things that I know about Donna. She grew up poor in West Baltimore and had many struggles in her early life. At one point, she was solely responsible for caring for two younger sisters while her mother was in jail. This may be the first example of a long list of caring and compassionate acts that she has bestowed on others over the years.

I also know that Donna has given her time, energy and limited financial resources to help many people in the community. I know she has given clothes and money to young girls who would benefit the most. She has anonymously paid local coffee shop expenses for months for a young single father who was struggling to make ends meet. I know she has invited her friend’s daughter to join her on family vacation and covered those expenses so the friend could also have those experiences.

Donna has reached out to others with mental health issues when they are in crisis. In one instance, she heard about a young person considering suicide and, instead of minding her own business, Donna reached out to make sure this person received help during this crisis.

I know she has utilized her psychology and counseling experience to help many people, some of whom she barely knew, just by being supportive and giving advice whenever they seek it. When the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster occurred, it was spring break. Instead of relaxing, she traveled to the site and helped many distraught families for several days.

There are many other small acts of kindness too numerous to mention, so I will close by stating Donna Joy is highly qualified and would be a valuable addition to the Jefferson County school board. Not only because of her experience and qualifications, but for her care and compassion about education and children in our community.

Russell Byrum