Bell, Ellison vie for seat on District One School Board


Rick Bell and Brenda Sims Ellison will face off for the Anderson School District One Board of Trustees Area 6 seat. The seat has been held by longtime school board member Joe Pack who announced earlier this year he would not be running again. Other candidates running for the Anderson District One School Board include Mike Wilson, Area 2 and David “Moochie” Merritt, Area 3, both running unopposed.

Rick Bell is a Palmetto High graduate and has a Bachelor’s in History and Master’s in Education from Furman University.

Although he has maintained a South Carolina teacher certification for 30 years he pursued a career in the insurance industry and is employed with Allstate Insurance.

“I have always wanted to be involved in education to do what I can to contribute to and improve local schools,” Bell said.

Bell said that a position on the local school board “would allow me to accomplish these goals and work for the community.”

As a board member, he said he would strive to increase students’ test scores and provide them with relevant and applicable abilities by emphasizing critical-thinking skills.”

He said he wants to endeavor to more fully prepare students for college or the job market.

Bell said his background and interest in education combined with being outside the school system would be a benefit he would bring to the position.

“I feel that I would have a well-balanced perspective in the position of School Board member.”

Priorities for Bell include maintaining sound fiscal accountability, attracting qualified teachers and administrators and cultivating a focus on history and political science.

Brenda Ellison is a graduate of the Anderson One School system and served as a teacher at both Wren Elementary and Cedar Grove Elementary, and as a principal at Pelzer Elementary and Cedar Grove Elementary.

Ellison served as the Principal of award winning Cedar Grove Elementary for 25 years. Under her leadership, the school received “Excellent” ratings and awards for student test scores on multiple occassions.

If elected to the Area 6 seat on the school board, she said, “I will continue to honor my commitment to Anderson One and to strive to provide students with the quality education that each child deserves.”

Ellison said if elected she will work with the current school board members and other elected officials “to provide and support a quality academically challenging education for all students.”

Priorities for her are to establish policies and procedures for all students following mandates set forth by the local school board.

She wants to provide a strong core base academic curriculum accompanined with professional development to support academic success and higher test scores which she said should be monitored by the school board.

She said she will work to challenge students, as well as career professionals, to understand how to use technologies for educational purposes and to improve overall achievement for each student.

A key priority is to continue to provide fiscal oversight for the district.

Ellison said she will serve as an advisor for children in public education and will make decisions to improve public ecducation for all students.

She also said she understands and will respond to the needs of the community.