The former chairman of the Douglas County Democrats has filed for election to a seat on the Lawrence school board.
Tom Hartley, a territorial representative for Forest Pharmaceuticals, officially filed Friday with the Douglas County Clerk’s Office.
He is the chairman of the Sunset Hill School site council, and his wife, Geri, is the parent-teacher organization president. They have three children who attend the school.
“I think serving on the school board will better allow me to utilize and help grow some of those partnerships but also to better serve the students,” Hartley said.
He is also on the board of directors for the Boys and Girls Club.
Hartley said the district needs to focus on teacher pay and improving elementary school facilities.
“We’re entering into a time where we’re certainly being asked to do more with less, and in times like that, the tendency is for the urgent to crowd out the important. ... I want to make sure that doesn’t happen.”
Hartley and Michael Pomes, who ran unsuccessfully for a seat in 2003 and 2007, filed on Friday.
Pomes could not be reached for comment.
They join two other candidates — Vanessa Sanburn, a Kansas University graduate student in social work, and current board member John Mitchell, director of the division of environment for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
The seats currently held by Mitchell, Craig Grant and Linda Robinson are up in the April 7 election.
Robinson has said she was not planning to seek a third term, and Grant has said he would make an announcement soon. The deadline to file is noon Tuesday.