Johnson takes seat on school board

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By Molly Haines

Only weeks after the general election, Dr. Larry Johnson took his seat on the board of education Monday.

Johnson took the oath of a school board member and the Kentucky constitutional oath during the board’s regular monthly meeting.

Johnson defeated Brian Clark and Deedi Dunavent by several hundred votes for the position of fourth district school board earlier this month.

Johnson, a family physician at New Horizons Health Systems, received a bachelor of education from Morehead State University in 1980, a master of counseling from Xavier University in 1987, and a doctor of medicine from the University of Louisville in 1999.

Johnson worked in education for 13 years, the last six of which he spent at Maurice Bowling Middle School as a counselor.

“I started out in education,” Johnson said. “I’ve had kids go through the Owen County school system and potentially a few more to go through. I spent 13 years in education and I feel like I know the ins and outs pretty well.”

A member of the New Horizons board since its beginning in 2000, Johnson said his experience on boards could bring ample knowledge to the board of education.

“I think my experience on the New Horizons board and my background in education will be positive for Owen County schools,” Johnson said. “I know how to look at financial reports and make decisions that I think will benefit students.”

Johnson said he would like to see the Owen County school district become a model district.

“I’d like to see the number of students graduating increase and test scores increase,” Johnson said. “Just because we’re a small district doesn’t mean we can’t be the best. We may not have all of the resources that a larger district might have, but we need to do our best given what we have.”

With 576 votes in the general election, Johnson said he was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support.

“I was very humbled by the amount of people who voted for me,” Johnson said. “I appreciate the support and the confidence that people had in me when they voted. I’m glad that so many people felt I could do this job.”

Johnson will complete the unfinished term of former board member Margaret Forsee who resigned June 1.