CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The Kanawha County Board of Education will not conduct interviews to find a replacement for board member Bill Raglin, who died last month. Instead, board members have compiled a list of about a dozen candidates and plan to vote on a selection next week.
Applicants include controversial former school board member Betty Jarvis and former state Senate Republican leader Vic Sprouse, according to school board President Pete Thaw, who announced candidates publicly Thursday even though other board members didn't want him to.
South Charleston attorney Ryan White and Ken Tyree, a captain with the Charleston Fire Department, also are interested in the position and were the only applicants to attend Thursday's school board meeting.
Others applicants who have contacted Thaw about the position include Dennis Davis, retired assistant superintendent of Kanawha County Schools and former head of vocational education; Curtis Robinson, former candidate for the school board and the House of Delegates; Pamela Minimah, executive director of All-Aid International and former school board candidate; Bill Ferrell, former Boone County sheriff and candidate for the school board, the House of Delegates and magistrate; Sallye Clark, former Kanawha County teacher and education activist; and John Miller, Charleston City Council member.
Other than Thaw, no one disclosed names of people who had contacted them about applying for the seat, but board members said many of the applicants had contacted all members of the board.
The board went into executive session briefly Thursday before returning to announce that the vote for Raglin's replacement will be taken Dec. 17.
Board member Robin Rector said she and other board members chose to skip the interview process mostly because of an impending deadline.
By law, the board has less than a month to select a replacement for late vice president Raglin, who died on Nov. 25 at age 76 after a short illness.
"We decided to take a list and prioritize that list and not do interviews. Part of that has to do with the short timeframe. It's the holiday season," Rector said. "We want to do good due diligence on this . . . , but based upon the names coming in, they were folks that are well-known. It didn't seem we needed to [extend] the process."
One of those well-known names is Jarvis, who served a tumultuous term on the school board from 1996 to 2000, during which several school administrators filed grievances against her. During her stint on the board, Jarvis made headlines when she was hospitalized after being found disoriented, wandering around a Kanawha City neighborhood in her bathrobe in the middle of the night.