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9 on ballot for 3 trustee positions

Voters in the South Harrison Community School Corp. will elect their representative for the Boone/Taylor Township, Posey Township and one of three Harrison Township seats. The other two Harrison Township seats, along with the Heth and Webster Township seats, will be on the ballot in 2014. The Boone/Taylor seat pits the incumbent, Ray (Radar) Lillpop, against Shelly M. Romero and Glenn Walker. Vying for the Harrison Township seat will be incumbent Larry Hauswald, Michael Biddle and Jeremy Shireman. Incumbent Jeffery L. Brown is being challenged by Jessica Kiper and Melinda D. Wibbels for the Posey Township seat. School board members, who serve four-year terms and are non-partisan, are not restricted to term limits. Questionnaires were sent to all candidates. Below are their responses.


Ray (Radar) Lillpop

Residency: Laconia

Family: Married; have five grown children, Tim, Billy, Jeff, Cindy and Lisa; 10 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren

School and year graduated: Graduated Laconia High School 1957

Additional education: (Did not answer)

Occupation: Retired painter, farmer and school bus driver

Previous political experience: Was on the school board from 1976 to 1984; on the board since 2008

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? To continue working to get more computers in the lower grades and continue supporting the technology for our schools, working to better our schools.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? Four years ago I promised the people, if I’m elected, I would support bringing back letter grades. I kept my promise and got the job done for the parents and the children.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? I want to make sure our teachers have all the tools they need and financial support. I believe we should hire every teacher an aide if they say they need one. A teacher with 20-plus students, in my opinion, needs some help. If elected, I’ve made it very clear Heth-Washington and New Middletown schools will not be closed on my vote. They are two very good community schools.

Contact information for voters: 737-2401

Shelly M. Romero

Residency: Laconia (Boone Township)

Family: Married with three children and three stepchildren

School and year graduated: Graduated Martinsville High School, 1988; graduated Vincennes University with Associate Degree, 1990; attended Eastern Kentucky University, 1990-1991

Additional education: I received in-depth training interviewing children and victims of crime (Indianapolis, 2009); historic preservation courses at Ivy Tech (Madison, Indiana 2010-2011)

Occupation: Employed 16 years with the State of Indiana

Previous political experience: None

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? I feel fresh faces and ideas bring value to any group. I am personally concerned with the high turn-over rate of our teachers, staff and coaches within the South Harrison school system. I want to take away any atmosphere of retaliation and intimidation that may have existed in the past by bringing open communication to the forefront. I want to return the board to their job of making policy decisions and entrust the principals and teachers to do the jobs they were hired to do.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? I am a positive person and a spirited free thinker. I have no family in the county, have no agenda and owe favors to no one. I possess good communication skills and have experience in conflict resolution. My sons are 15, 13 and 4 and all have been or will be in the school system. I will promote fairness, a diverse and creative learning environment and a sense of pride within each school. I wish to move the school board forward instead of hashing over problems that may have occurred in the past.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? We need to improve our selection and retention of qualified coaches, teachers and staff. Our schools shouldn’t be a revolving door for personnel; when it is, that indicates a problem. We have stopped teaching our young students to write cursive and, despite being a strong supporter of technology, this is a necessary communication skill our children absolutely still need to have. I would support a Practice=Play requirement that states if a student athlete ‘ regardless of ability ‘ attends practices, maintains grades and paid the same fees as other teammates, then that student would be allowed to play or perform a percentage of their game/ event. I would propose improvements in ‘greening’ the schools and reducing waste by recycling paper, cafeteria containers, cardboard, etc. I am firmly opposed to closing or consolidating any schools within our district and would vote against such a measure if proposed.

Contact information for voters: Facebook ‘ Shelly Romero for South Harrison School Board; home phone ‘ 737-1200

Glenn Walker

Residency: Laconia

Family: Wife Kimberly; daughters Allison, Lauren and Lesley; two grandsons, Cole and Cooper

School and year graduated: South Central Junior-Senior High School, 1980

Additional education: Bachelor of Arts in communications, Indiana University Southeast, 1989

Occupation: Mercer Transportation, Louisville, Ky. (contractor relations), 16 years

Previous political experience: South Harrison Community School Corp. board member 4 years; Harrison County Community Foundation board member 3 years; South Harrison Water Corp. 9 years

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? First of all, I love children. I’m a dad, a papa and an uncle. I feel our children deserve the best education possible. I would like to have the opportunity to be part of the decision-making process.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? I have served a four-year term on the South Harrison (Community) School Corp. Board of Trustees. I know the inner workings of the board and the school corporation. I have served many years on different boards and have worked with a lot of our county community leaders. I would like to bring this experience to the school board. I know many of our school employees, teachers, bus drivers, principals and administrators. They are all part of our children’s future. I hope to work with them all.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? I only have one agenda and that is to provide the best education for our children. I would like to propose to the board that they plan a strategic planning session. Bring all department heads together and have them compile a wish list. The board can take those wish lists and work on their short- and long-term goals. Goal setting is always a work in progress. A successful board is one that reviews their goals frequently and adjusts to any unforeseen circumstances.

Contact information for voters: Please visit my Facebook page, Glenn Walker for school board. I invite any questions or concerns you may have.


Michael Biddle

Residency: Corydon

Family: Married to the former Nancy Miller for 37 years; one son, Jake, who lives in Nashville, Tenn., with his wife, Shana, and our three beautiful granddaughters, Kennedy, Sloane and Ellie

School and year graduated: Graduated in 1972 from Corydon Central High School

Additional education: (Did not answer)

Occupation: Materials/ purchasing manager for ICON Metal Forming for 24 years located in Corydon

Previous political experience: None

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? As a lifelong resident of Harrison County, I have always been interested in the operation of the school system, and I believe that I can make a difference. I think that a new face on the board, to examine the issues, would be an asset to both the students and the community. Providing a balanced quality education to the students would be my goal.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? I have been involved in coaching young men in school and AAU for over 20 years, and I feel that I can associate with the problems that students have as they are maturing along with addressing the issues of the school. Besides coaching, I have been involved in purchasing and budgeting for many years. This experience should prove to be valuable as financial decisions become more difficult to make with funding being reduced. I have always been open minded and would not vote for or against an item simple because it is recommended by the administration.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? I would push for a review of present and past relationships with vendors to ascertain if cost savings can be achieved. The reasons for personnel decisions should be made public. It appears to me that the board seems to make their decisions with little public scrutiny. I would review all employment positions as they become open to see if some positions can be either combined or reduced, as long as it would benefit the education process. I would support the review and changes of the vocational and technology programs of the school system.

Contact information for voters: 738-2026

Larry Hauswald

Residency: Corydon

Family: Wife Carol (Harrison County treasurer); children Jeff Hauswald (superintendent of schools in Kokomo) and Jill Drury (medical technician at Harrison County Hospital); grandkids Justin and Haley Drury

School and year graduated: Corydon Central High School, 1962

Additional education: University of Evansville (1966), B.A. in education; Indiana University (1972) master’s in education

Occupation: Retired teacher of 37 years and farmer

Previous political experience: 2 terms on school board

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? I am concerned about the educational future of not only our county, but our state and nation. I would like to think as a school board member I can help our board move forward in a positive manner to improve our schools. I am proud of our schools in South Harrison and hope I can be a small part for their continued success.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? I earned both an undergraduate and master’s degree in education. I have taught, coached and been involved in South Harrison schools my entire life.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? 1) ‘Let educators teach.’ At South Harrison, we have excellent teachers, administrators and a great support staff. However, they have to spend too much time on clerical work. 2) When the school year starts in the fall of 2013, all South Harrison high school students will have their own laptop. I would like to see this program continue at lower levels. 3) We need to continue or expand our dual-credit classes to help offset college cost for students and parents. 4) With our ever-shrinking world, we might want to look into programs that offer some kind of international studies.

Contact information for voters: 738-4035

Jeremy Shireman

Residency: Corydon

Family: Wife Laura Shireman, sons Owen Shireman, 8, and Cooper Shireman, 7

School and year graduated: Corydon Central High School 1997

Additional education: BA mathematics, North Park University 2001; MA, Teaching Spalding University 2004

Previous political experience: I ran for county council in 2010.

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? Too many times the board oversteps their boundaries. The school board has two primary functions: they hire the superintendent and they set school policy. The board should act on the recommendations of the superintendent and hold the superintendent accountable for his decisions. I think I will do a good job of making sure Dr. Clark is held accountable for his decisions while giving him the ability to do his job and allow the principals he has hired to do theirs.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? Since I am an educator, I understand the needs of a school better than someone who has not been involved with schools. I have also taken several classes to get my school principal license so I have a great base of knowledge on the legal and financial aspects of running a school. In addition, my family has been very successful at running their own business so I have got to see a great example of how to maintain a balance of fiscal responsibility and necessary expenditures.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? The main things I will try to do is allow the school and corporation administrators run the schools. I will not sit in on interviews for coaches, administrators or teachers. If someone calls me with a complaint about school personnel, I will direct them to the proper person that can answer their questions. Only after the chain of command has been exhausted would I consider getting involved. South Harrison is a great corporation and has excelled academically and athletically, and I think they can continue to do so if we let the qualified people make the decisions on how to best serve the students.

Contact information for voters: [email protected]


Jeffery L. Brown

Residency: Elizabeth

Family: Debbie McKim Brown, wife of 37 years; daughter Kim Smith and son-in-law Nick Smith; son Brad Brown; three grandchildren

School and year graduated: South Central Junior-Senior High School, 1973

Additional education: N/a

Occupation: Ford Motor Co., 34 years, retired; now at Louisville Slugger last four years

Previous political experience: School board 16 years

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? For the kids of South Harrison schools. I like working with the schools. I enjoy working with people and kids. I would like to see more dual-credit programs at both high schools. And I would like more one-to-one laptops for lower grade levels at all schools.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? 16-year work with the schools. My job at Ford as a team leader, setting up job at Ford. Working with people now at Louisville Slugger, work on the safety committee and clerk of session at Rehoboth Presbyterian Church and president of Rehoboth Cemetery board. Enjoy working with people and helping people and kids.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? To help make classroom size smaller or more aids in rooms. To see what can be done to make all schools passing schools. To see that we can keep providing free textbooks and counselor for the elementary schools. To see that no school be closed. And to see that all students have the best education they can have. To make sure the money is going to where it is needed.

Contact information for voters: [email protected]; 696-2814

Jessica Kiper

Residency: Resident of Posey Township for 7 years

Family: Husband, Sammy Kiper; children Miranda (13), Hailey (9), Kendall (7), Christian (6) and Camden Kiper (3)

School and year graduated: DuPont Manual High School, Louisville, Class of 2000

Additional education: 3 years at Jefferson Community College

Occupation: Full-time mother of 5 and assists part-time at Ms. Joy’s Preschool, which my youngest son attends

Previous political experience: None. I believe that school board shouldn’t be a ‘political’ role.

Why are you seeking office (in 100 words or less)? I felt led to seek this office, that, for whatever reason, it was God’s call on my life to do this now. I pray that, whatever the outcome, I can learn and grow from this and that He is glorified. Before I felt called, I saw a great need for a fresh perspective on our school board. I am trying to meet this need and the need to have someone who is willing to stand up and never settle for their children and all children in this community. As a mother of 5, I can’t complain if I’m not willing to fight to be the change I want to see.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? ‘God doesn’t call the qualified; God qualifies the called.’ I have been leaning on this quote lately because I have never been a board member or anything of much worldly importance but, to my family, I am manager and director. I know that my decisions go far beyond effecting myself. There are far-reaching ramifications involved in every decision I make. I understand that fact is the same for sitting on a school board, only on a larger scale. No choice made will ever be taken lightly because it involves my children, your children, the staff that commit their lives to teaching and each family in this community.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? First, I think lengthening the contracts of our administrators is very important. They are up for renewal every single year, giving them little time to evaluate the current standing of their school and do their jobs. Second, making sure all positions in our corporation are filled by the most dedicated and qualified candidate and that every position that should be full-time is. The school board’s job is to establish the policies for governing schools, to represent the wishes of the people and exercise lay control of educational goals and direction. For this system to work at its best, the school board needs to be aware of its job and let the dedicated and qualified staff do theirs. The bottom line is that I am a parent, not unlike many of you, and I will do whatever it takes to ensure that our kids get the best possible education from South Harrison Community School Corp.

Contact information for voters: Via Facebook at

Melinda D. Wibbels

Residency: Elizabeth

Family: Husband, Bill Wibbels; children, Ben, age 12, Ellie, age 8, and Megan, age 7

School and year graduated: South Central, 1993

Additional education: 1998 graduate of the University of Southern Indiana in Evansville with a degree in dental hygiene. Additional coursework at East Tennessee State University.

Occupation: Licensed dental hygienist, currently practicing in Georgetown.

Previous political experience: None

Why are you seeking the office (in 100 words or less)? Our children get shortchanged when board members ‘play politics’ and use their position to run their own agenda. When our teachers, staff and administrators don’t feel fully supported by the board, our corporation loses great people. This means our kids and community as a whole suffer. I have three children who attend South Harrison schools; therefore, I have a vested interest in making sure our corporation is doing the best we can do with what we have available. While I appreciate Mr. Brown’s 16 years on the board, it is time for a change and a fresh perspective.

What qualifies you for the office (in 100 words or less)? I am an educated, professional woman and mother who possesses common sense and the willingness to collaborate with the other members of the board and our superintendent to move the South Harrison Community School Corp. forward. I currently serve on the South Harrison Community Development Board of Directors and have experience working with a variety of personalities in setting short- and long-term goals for our organization while being mindful of budget concerns.

If elected, what issues will you bring to the forefront for the board to work on (in 150 words or less)? I feel that some of our board members have forgotten what serving on the board is all about. It should first and foremost be about what is best for our children. I look forward to working with the other board members in properly representing our entire school corporation while adhering to the Indiana School Board Association Code of Ethics. I have no interest in micromanaging personnel matters. Let’s let the teachers teach and the principals lead their schools without board interference and ensure that all of our schools, staff and students know that they are appreciated and an important part of our community.

Contact information for voters: Phone ‘ 969-3534; e-mail ‘ [email protected]; find me on Facebook at Mindy Wibbels for South Harrison School Board