Don Rowe …. back on board

Receives oath of office to fill YPS Board of Education vacancy

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YPS Board of Education Member Don Rowe

By Conrad Dudderar

Senior Staff Writer

Don Rowe is back … on Yukon’s school board.

Rowe took the oath of office at the Sept. 8th Yukon Public Schools’ Board of Education meeting to fill the Post 5 vacancy.

Rowe, who previously served as the board’s Post 3 representative, was appointed in August to complete a five-year term.

The Post 5 seat was vacant after Rex VanMeter did not seek re-election to a second term and no eligible candidate filed to succeed him.

A 1988 Yukon High School graduate, Rowe called it an “honor” to serve the Yukon school district.

In one of his first acts as the board’s Post 5 member, Rowe voted to have YPS students return to the classroom starting Wednesday – instead of waiting until mid-October as earlier proposed.

All students began the 2020-21 school year with online, “distance” learning due to COVID-19 concerns.

“I am so grateful for the parents and the concerned citizens who have called me, emailed me and texted me,” Rowe said. “All of you are very important to me and to this board.

“We do want to hear your opinion and are thankful for your opinion because that’s the only way we know what you think.”

YPS Board President Suzanne Cannon commended Rowe for his willingness to serve on the school board “during a pandemic.”

YPS Superintendent Dr. Jason Simeroth congratulated Rowe, thanking him “for volunteering to help us out.”

Rowe, a Mustang High School teacher, resigned from the YPS Board in summer 2019 after moving to a home outside the Post 3 district. He now resides in the Post 5 area, in Westport 66.

Rowe and Phil Matthews were interviewed for the Post 5 vacancy during an hour-long executive session as the August YPS Board meeting. When board members reconvened, they unanimously selected Rowe to succeed VanMeter on the five-member board.

Other YPS Board of Education members are: President Suzanne Cannon, Post 1; Vice President Chris Cunningham, Post 3; Clerk Michele Hawthorne, Post 4; and Deputy Clerk Leonard Wells, Post 2.