Election Q&A: Collin College Board of Trustees for Place 9

Ahead of the May election, meet the two candidates running to serve on the Collin College Board of Trustees Place 9 seat. (Community Impact staff)
Ahead of the May election, meet the two candidates running to serve on the Collin College Board of Trustees Place 9 seat. (Community Impact staff)

Ahead of the May election, meet the two candidates running to serve on the Collin College Board of Trustees Place 9 seat. (Community Impact staff)

Learn more about the candidates running for the Collin College Board of Trustees Place 9 seat ahead of the May 1 election. Early voting is from April 19-27.


Editor's note: An asterisk (*) indicates the candidate is an incumbent.


DALLAS-FORT WORTH



Collin College Board of Trustees for Place 9










Andy Hardin*



Occupation: Accountant, bookkeeper






Why did you decide to run for the Collin College board of trustees?



AH: I have served on the board for almost nine years and enjoyed the opportunity to help guide Collin College through the current expansion. My mantra is “Education is the Answer.” Education is the answer to almost every question, and Collin College provides those answers at a very high quality and at a very affordable price. Being able to participate at the board level allows me to make sure the quality of education stays at that same high level.



How has your experience prepared you for board service?



AH: I have a bachelor’s degree in business from Texas Christian University and several professional designations. Over my 45-year career I have worked in the insurance, media and accounting industries. That well-rounded experience provides me a viewpoint that allows me to be a strong supporter for students and taxpayers. These groups use and pay for the college and deserve an experienced advocate representing them on the board.



What do you think are the biggest issues facing Collin College today, and how do you plan to address them if elected?



AH: I wish there were only one issue, but the reality is that there are many, and that is the reason to have a board member who can weigh the relevance and priority of multiple issues at the same time. Every issue has an advocate, and since the board does not have unlimited resources, you need someone who has the experience making big decisions. I served on the Texas Board of Mental Health and Retardation for seven years. While I was chairman, the budget was $2 billion with 20,000 employees across the state. Navigating that agency with the legislature and dozens of special interest groups was a real educational opportunity!



What else do you want voters to know about you?



AH: If the voters want an open-minded, honest and experienced representative, I am the person they should elect.









Jacoby Stewart Sr.



Occupation: Business owner and signing agent/mobile notary






Why did you decide to run for the Collin College board of trustees?



JS: To protect the sanctity of the educational process from obtuseness, nepotistic and totalitarian tactics that will negatively impact students, teachers and Collin College as a whole.



How has your experience prepared you for board service?



JS: My experience has prepared me to listen to others and understand their position. My experience has taught me how to be a great leader. I have learned that it takes a brain trust to address complex issues correctly. My experience has taught me that a great leader is one who includes the people and not excludes the people due to differences.



What do you think are the biggest issues facing Collin College today, and how do you plan to address them if elected?



JS: I believe the biggest issues Collin College is facing is obtuseness and a lack of true diversity that Collin College prides itself on. I will support implementing hiring practices that will ensure the faculty reflects the student body ratio. I plan to support unilateral governance with faculty and staff. I will support freedom of speech without retaliation or intimidation.



What else do you want voters to know about you?



JS: I am a husband, father, neighbor and a fighter for ALL people to have access to an education and the American dream. I am a hard working businessman who worked while gaining an education, pulling myself up by the bootstraps. Education is the key, Collin College, if used correctly, can guide and develop our children and non traditional students to change their social imagination.


By Valerie Wigglesworth
Valerie has been a journalist for more than 30 years. She is currently managing editor for DFW Metro for Community Impact Newspaper.