Faculty and staff run in elections

Story by Breanna Harris, Contributing writer 

Seven Murray State faculty members were on the Nov. 6 ballot, and four of these faculty members were elected to office.

Board of Education

Shawn Smee, director of recruitment, was elected to Murray’s Independent School District Board of Education with 21.75 percent of the votes.

After the election, Smee took to Instagram and Twitter to share his gratitude.

“Thank you to all of you who voted today!” Smee wrote. “Excited and honored to help support these kiddos and so many more through the MISD school board. Thank you for your support!”

With 20.73 percent of votes, Miranda Terry, director of Applied Health Sciences and the Public and Community Health Program, was also elected to the Board.

“I am going to continue to do my job and focus on the students by just listening to the parents, teachers and administrators,” Terry said. “Being a sounding board and coming up with the best solutions is one of the things that I believe brings strength to my position at Murray state.”

Martin Milkman, professor of economics, ran for a seat on the Board, but fell short of his goal.

Murray City Council

Two of Murray State’s professors ran for seats on Murray’s City Council and failed to secure them.

Barbara Cobb, professor of English and coordinator of the liberal arts major, has been teaching at Murray State for 16 years and throughout her time at the University, she has has served as director of Shakespeare in the Schools Partner Initiative, tailoring the liberal arts major, and academic advising.

“I hope that students will consider internships with the city government,” Cobb said. “Students can gain valuable work experience and could benefit from the innovation and research that students bring to internships.”

Jessica Evans, assistant director of assessment, was also one of the candidates not elected to the council. She has been at Murray State since 2010, and served the University as an administrative assistant in the department of Applied Health Sciences and as lecturer in the College of Business, before moving into the assistant assessment director role.

“It is important to any member of the City Council to consider that without the students, the city of Murray would not thrive in the way that it has,” Evans said.

Hazel City Council

Although not in Murray, Jodi Hanneman, administrative assistant for the department of Applied Health Science, has landed a seat on Hazel’s City Council.


Democrat, Paul Walker, associate professor of English, campaigned for First Congressional District to have a voice on Capitol Hill, but he succumbed to Republican James Comer.

In Calloway County, Comer received more than half of the votes, 61.91% compared to Walker’s 38.09% of total votes in the precincts.

Walker said he plans to run for office again in the future. He said issues he would like to see Comer address are rising student debt, health care and improving western Kentucky’s infrastructure.


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