WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — Marsha Winegarner is the incumbent Walton County school board district 4 seat holder and is running for re-election against Jeri Michie.
Who is Marsha Winegarner?
Winegarner is from the south side of Chicago. She went to USF and studied the biology of the opossum, specifically the reproductive tract.
She continued her studies at the Archibald Biological Station in Lake Placid, Fla., where she got her Masters degree.
She was called to Tampa to assist in research on the encephalitis epidemic in opossums.
She started her teaching career at Lake Placid High School teaching about bobcats.
She met her husband, Chet, at the Archibald Biological Station when he was working there as a research scientist from the American Museum of Natural History. They moved to Walton County in 1986 to get a break from the sand dunes of Lake Placid and live somewhere with trees.
She became a teacher at Walton High School. She was awarded the Presidential Award of Excellence in Science Teaching and Teacher of the Year her first year.
She then became the state science coordinator for K-12 at the Department of Education in Tallahassee and served for 12 years.
Afterwards, she went back to Walton County and worked out of Freeport High School helping in school improvement around the district.
She then opened her own education consulting company, MLSW Consulting. During that time, she helped develop the Sunshine State Standards.
In 2015, she was elected to the school board. Since then she’s taken course in governance and chairmanship. Last year she was elected to the Florida School Board Association board of directors which will continue for as long as she remains on the Walton County school board.
What are your top three priorities moving forward?
- Get the schools open. In an ideal world, open up the schools with masks.
- Helping special needs kids cope with the disruptions.
- Accommodating the population growth in Walton County by building new schools.
Do you feel that all Walton County schools are treated fairly?
Yes. Needs are different in different areas, but they are met.
What are your thoughts on technical training?
Standards should continue to update. Can’t have enough career and technical training.
“I think I have a wealth of background knowledge that you get from living the life that I have lived.”