Trish Brammell, best known as “Miss Trish” to Carter County students and school staff, hopes voters will remember to show their support for her write-in campaign for the District 3 seat on the Carter County Board of Education.
A Carter County native, Brammell is a 1999 graduate of East Carter High School. She then graduated from the Medical Office program at ACTC in 2002. She cites her mother’s work as an educator as motivation for an early interest in schools.
“My mom was a teacher. She studied at ACC and graduated when I was in 5th Grade,” Brammell said while enjoying coffee on her front porch during a recent sunny morning, with her daughter, Macy, nearby.
“I always wanted to be a teacher, but I saw how much she did and how little she got paid for it,” Brammell said, soon adding concerns about repaying student loans as well.
When her daughter enrolled in school, Brammell said she volunteered to help out during a book fair and discovered her passion for school work when she had a leadership moment while helping the librarian, and someone suggested she become a substitute teacher.
“I called my sisters and said, ‘I’ve finally found my calling.’ I was a sub for a couple of years and then I went full time at Prichard.”
Brammell said school time should be mandatory for anyone who wants to be a school board member.
“I wish every school board member was required to work in our schools for a year before they run,” she said.
“I have my own child in the school system. I know what goes on inside those walls. It is completely different when you are knee deep in the trenches with kids and exhausted teachers.”
Brammell lives in Grayson with her husband, Chad, a 1992 ECHS grad who is an electrician with IBEW 317, their daughter, Macy, 14. They have a boxer, named Cash. She is a member at First Church of Christ. She is the daughter of Pat and Judy Holbrook, and some may know her father as the bassist of Five For The Gospel. Her mom was a teacher at Willard and later at Heritage Elementary, where she retired in 2018.
“I was raised in her classrooms over the years,” Brammell said.
Motivated By A Meeting
Brammell said she decided to run for school board after watching an online meeting of the group in July.
“I was burdened by the lack of representation for teachers,” she said, adding she had to consult the school system’s website to determine which board member represented her. “I learned she’s not a full-time county resident and her kids have already graduated. I knew in my heart the teachers and students and parents deserve better representation.”
Ready To Work & Serve
“I live in the middle of the county so I can be at any school in 30 minutes. If they need help with a book fair or Christmas decorations – call and if I have child care I’ll be there,” Brammell said.
“I want people to know me and know that I will always stand up for them, even if I’m standing alone.”
Issues & Concerns
If elected to serve on the board of education, Brammell said she hopes to improve students lives and not make test scores the ultimate goal.
“When I left Prichard I never wondered how kids scored. I wondered if they had a warm place in winter or had been fed a meal the night before. If we have students in their third foster home of the year, how can we expect them to score well on a test?
I don’t care as much about the scores as I care about the kids.”
Vocational education would also be a priority for Brammell.
“I want the community to be just as excited about a kid going to trade school as it would be for a kid getting a full ride to Morehead. We need carpenters and electricians and plumbers – occupations that are often forgotten about and we need them here! Anyone with those kind of jobs will be able to provide for their family. I want to celebrate those kids as much as we do those with sports or academic scholarships.”
Brammell said she missed the filing deadline, which was changed to June 3 instead of August this year, but still felt she could win.
“I knew going in it would be hard as a write in, but I was willing to take a chance.”
Brammell said she’s heard from many parents of children in her “first wave” of students and are now entering college, expressing their support for “Miss Trish”.
Anyone with questions about how to cast a write-in vote is asked to consult with a poll worker, Brammell advised while demonstrating the simplicity of the vote.
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Story & Bottom Photo by TIM PRESTON
Carter County Post