School board candidates file for election


Photos courtesy of Mary LaPak

Following the possibility of two seats opening in the Board of Education, five community members have become candidates for the seats, Including Jessica Clark, Izzy Imig, Charles Keith Messmer, Amy Ryan and Deborah Stine. The election will occur on April 5, 2022.

Devan Ellison, Staff Reporter

The Rockwood School District (RSD) has announced the candidates for the 2022 Rockwood Board of Education election. The election will be held on April 5, 2022.

The district has two positions open, each with a three year term.

The candidates were asked to fill out a biography on themselves. The biographies included information about which parts of the district the candidates reside in, their current occupations and their goals for Rockwood. 

Jessica Clark is a mother of four children who attend Rockwood schools. Clark left her role as an Operations Analyst for a global wealth and investment management firm in order to stay home with her children during the COVID-19 pandemic. She is now a daily radio show host, where she discusses solutions to Black issues.

“I am running for Rockwood School Board of Education to ensure we find our way back to the purpose of public education and to lay a solid academic foundation upon which we can continue to build,” Clark said.

Izzy Imig is originally from Baghdad, Iraq. After being an Arabic translator for the United States Army, Imig moved to America with her husband and has 3 children in the RSD. Imig became a translator for Fortune 100 companies when she first moved to America. Later on, Imig moved to Missouri, where she enrolled her three children into RSD. made the decision to resign from translating so she could remain at home to work with her kids as they were figuring out online learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Imig plans to refocus Rockwood on giving its students successful and beneficial educations. After a year of constant debate and conflict, Imig is hoping to bring her vision of a thoughtful and collaborative school board to reality. This way, the conflict will not be influencing children’s educations.

“I will work to empower all of our children to succeed,” Imig said.

Charles Keith Messmer has lived in Eureka for the majority of his life. He attended Rockwood schools as a child and graduated from Eureka High School in 1999. Today, his kids attend Rockwood schools. Messmer has been a police officer for almost 16 years. In addition, Messmer has been actively involved in various community charities, fundraisers and schools. As a board member, Messmer plans to maintain peace between RSD and Rockwood parents. He said he has been watching the conflict take place over the past few years and wants to change that.

“I want to help people work together, not grow further apart,” Messmer said.

Amy Ryan is a mother to two daughters who have both attended Green Pines Elementary School. Ryan has a Bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences from Purdue University. In addition, she obtained her Master’s degree in Health Informatics. Ryan’s goal is to minimize confusion in communication between the district, parents and students. With this, Ryan believes student stress will be reduced and academic success will be amplified.

My passion is for our kids to achieve their highest academic potential,” Ryan said.

Deborah Stine is a mother to three previous Rockwood students. All three of her children attended Fairway Elementary School, Wildwood Middle School and Eureka High School.  Stine obtained her Bachelor’s degree from Vanderbilt University and later received her Master’s degree from Georgetown University. Stine previously served 10 years as vice president of a national organization dedicated to preventing drop-outs. She currently works in higher education, where she aspires to raise money for scholarships and other important programs. Stine hopes to keep education at the top of the priority list for her agenda. She wants to ensure that every student and staff member in RSD feels welcomed and supported in the Rockwood community.

“I will work to ensure that every student has a welcoming school where they can learn safely, think critically and grow confidently,” Stine said.

In addition to their biographies, which can be found on the RSD website, the candidates will have the opportunity to present themselves at a public event.

The League of Women Voters has announced that there will be a Meet the Candidates event on March 8, 2022. The event will be held at the Administrative Annex in Eureka from 6-8 p.m.