By CHRIS EDENS, City Editor
Zach Barron and Debbie Wallis are competing for an open seat on the Oologah-Talala School Board. The election will be held Tuesday, Feb. 12.
Seat No. 1 has been vacant since Drue Wagoner resigned in November. The winner of the election will serve the remaining 2-1/2 years of Wagoner’s term.
The Leader asked the candidates a series of questions. A brief summary is below.
I graduated from Oologah High School in 1994 and attended college at Baker University in Baldwin City, Kan.
While at Baker I played football and met my wife, Missy Barron, who currently serves as the Oologah Parents & Teachers President.
I graduated from Baker with degrees in accounting and business and attended the University of Tulsa, College of Law.
The past 12 years I have been a partner and practicing attorney in the firm Gibbon, Barron & Barron, PLLC, which has offices in Tulsa, Oologah, and Nowata.
My wife and I have three boys: Jack, age 11; Ben, age 8, and Reed. age 5. I enjoy coaching or serving as an assistant coach to our kids in their various sporting activities.
I look back at the years I spent in the Oologah-Talala school system with great appreciation. The school was the motivating factor which caused my wife and I to move our three sons to this area.
I decided to run for the school board so I could serve the school system, which our sons will someday graduate.
At a time when all schools face challenges, I want to be a part of helping to ensure our school meets those challenges and continues to provide the best education possible.
My number one goal and priority would be to enhance the educational experience of our students.
My intentions rest solely with making sure the school continues to improve and meets future challenges. With these beliefs, I respectfully ask for the vote and support of those who reside in the district.
I am married to David Wallis, who I’ve known since the first grade when we both attended elementary school in Talala.
We have two boys, Michael, 22 and Jared, 20, and both graduated from Oologah-Talala Public Schools.
Michael is attending University of Rochester in New York and will graduate this May with a BS in Environmental & Evolutionary Biology.
Jared is attending NSU and will graduate next May with a BA in Music.
I started my career in 1977 as a Contracts Administrator for a major computer company in the San Francisco Bayarea.
I came back to Oklahoma to manage information systems for a pipeline construction company in Tulsa and was there 14 years before I was lucky enough to become a stay-at-home mom.
After the boys started school, I began volunteering and substituting in the various offices and classrooms.
In 1998, I went to work as the principal’s secretary in the high school and then moved to the middle school as the principal’s secretary.
In 2006, we purchased a local pizzeria that we owned and operated until 2009. Since 2009 I’ve worked at the Pryor campus of Northeast Technology Center in adult education.
I want to serve the students, teachers, parents and patrons of the Oologah-Talala school district by working with the other school board members and school administrators to help make decisions that will create the best educational experience and foundation for our students.
My goal will be to listen, to learn, and to ask questions until I have the understanding required to make the best and most informed decision I can about each issue presented to the school board.