Who is Leigh Goodson, Tulsa school board candidate?

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Leigh Goodson is a candidate for Tulsa Public Schools Election District 5, a seat currently held by Brian Hunt, who has opted not to run for re-election.

Goodson is involved in what looks very much like an arm of Tulsa's Cockroach Caucus. She's a member of the board of the Center for Legislative Excellence. She and her husband Mark R. Goodson have given a total of $2,500 to CLE, their largest state political contribution.

Here's the full list of CLE board members. While the CLE's goals are laudable -- lobby effectively at the State Capitol for Tulsa's share of state funding for roads, hospitals, and higher education -- you may recognize on this list the names of several who have been actively involved in the effort to reshape (I'd say mutilate) Tulsa's city government over the last several years:

Robert C. Poe, Co-Chairman
Larry Mocha, Co-Chairman
Connie McFarland, Membership Chair
Jay Helm, Contributions Co-Chair
Pete Regan, Contributions Co-Chair
Richard Riddle, Treasurer
Howard Barnett
Guy Berry, III
John Brock
Joe Cappy
Len Eaton
Patty Eaton
Leigh Goodson
Heather Griffin
Kell Kelly
Kris Langholz
Robert Lorton
Jim Orbison
Jody Parker, Emeritus Board Member

Leigh Goodson, a registered Democrat as of this July, has also contributed to Grow Oklahoma PAC, Prosperity PAC, and Oklahoma Rising, as well as individual candidates Lucky Lamons, Brian Crain, Mark McCullough, Dan Newberry, Eddie Fields, and Mary Fallin. Neither she nor her husband, Mark R. Goodson, show up in the opensecrets.org database of donors to Federal campaigns.

She is currently serving on the Sixth Grade Task Force. She is listed as "Leigh Goodson, Ph.D., OSU Center for Health Sciences and Chair of the Teacher Leader Effective Committee, The Foundation for Tulsa Schools." (Here is a list of the board of the Foundation for Tulsa Schools.)

In 2006, the Journal Record profiled Leigh Goodson as an "Achiever under 40," listing her as vice president for enrollment management and marketing at Oklahoma State University Center For Health Sciences:

Goodson started her career as an admissions counselor, moving up the ladder to academic adviser, director of medical school admissions and dean of students before being named to her current position as vice president of enrollment management and marketing for the Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences (OSU- CHS).

Each position in higher education has allowed me to help others overcome obstacles to their educational goals, she said....

Goodson earned a bachelor's degree in political science from OSU in Stillwater; a master's in organizational communication from Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas; and a doctorate of philosophy in educational research and evaluation from OSU....

Her community involvement includes serving on the board of the YMCA of Greater Tulsa. She also led in the development and remains a member of the Camp Takatoka Advisory Board. Goodson volunteers with Riverfield Country Day School and Eliot Elementary School, and is a member of the Boston Avenue United Methodist Church.

The Journal Record profile mentions two children who were 7 and 4 in 2006.

According to news reports, Goodson was in Leadership Oklahoma Class 23.

My gut feeling, from looking at the above information, is that Leigh Goodson is an insider, likely to be a supporter of the status quo. I could be wrong, and she might be a true reformer who supports charter schools, vouchers, classical curriculum, and traditional teaching methods. Still, I'd feel better about this election knowing I'll have at least one other choice on my ballot come February.

You want to make a difference, Tulsa Tea Partiers? Here's your chance. Run for this open seat, Election District 5, or run in Election District 6 against a 16-year incumbent (Ruth Ann Fate) who has been an obstacle to expanded school choice for Tulsa children. Remember: The filing deadline is today (Wednesday, December 7, 2011) at 5, and you need to allow time to fill out paperwork and get it notarized.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on December 7, 2011 1:03 AM.

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