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NEWS RELEASES 2002-03 :: SEPTEMBER 12, 2002


Phillip J. Kirk Jr., president of the NC Citizens for Business and Industry, today was re-elected to a fourth term as chairman of the State Board of Education by his fellow Board members as part of the September meeting. Dr. Jane Norwood, professor of Education at Appalachian State University, also was re-elected as vice chairman.

The Board's chairman and vice-chairman serve two-year terms. Board members are appointed by the Governor and serve eight-year terms. The State Treasurer and Lieutenant Governor also are Board members.

"North Carolina's public schools lead the nation in progress, and I am honored to be selected to lead the State Board of Education for another term. We have many challenges to meet and goals to achieve as we continue our drive to being First in America by 2010," State Board of Education Chairman Phil Kirk said.

State Superintendent Mike Ward said he was delighted that the State Board will continue under the strong leadership of Phil Kirk and Jane Norwood. "North Carolina's public schools have experienced tremendous academic progress over the last several years. Phil's and Jane's leadership has been instrumental in the state's efforts to lead the nation in education."

Kirk was named to the Board by Gov. James B. Hunt Jr. in 1997 to succeed Dr. Jay Robinson, the former chairman. Board members elected Kirk to serve the rest of Robinson's term as chairman in 1998, and in 2000 and 2002 re-elected him to full two-year terms as chairman. His re-election makes him the second longest serving chairman of the State Board of Education behind Dallas Herring.

As President of NCCBI, the state's chamber of commerce, Kirk is considered the state's chief advocate for business and industrial interests in North Carolina. A graduate of Catawba College, Kirk is a former teacher in Salisbury and the former chief of staff for two North Carolina Governors and U.S. Sen. Jim Broyhill. On May 8, 2002, Kirk attained his goal of visiting all 117 local school districts in North Carolina, a goal he made when he was appointed chairman of the Board in 1998. Kirk is a Raleigh resident and has one child in Wake County public schools and one who is a recent graduate of Wake County public schools.

Norwood, who is a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Appalachian State University and also supervises student teachers enrolled in ASU's Teacher Education Program, was appointed to the State Board by Gov. Jim Martin in 1990. She was elected by fellow members to serve the rest of Dr. Prezell Robinson�s term as vice chairman in 1999 when his term ended and then re-elected vice chairman in 2000. Norwood also will represent the Southern area on the National Association of State Boards of Education when she is installed at NASBE's Annual Meeting in October.

For more information, please call DPI's Communications Division at 919.807.3450.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.