Friday, February 8, 2013

CANDIDATE QUESTIONNAIRE: Douglas Lockwood, Turner Board of Education

Publisher's Note: Beginning today, we are running candidate profiles and questionnaires from the various races across Wyandotte County. Profiles will run in order of the response they come in.

Our first profile is of Douglas Lockwood, who's running for the Turner Board of Education.

1. What in your background (or what experience) makes you believe you are qualified to serve on the Turner Board of Education?

I have extensive education with a BS and MBA from Central Missouri State University, a JD from UMKC Law School, and a CFP certification from the College of Financial Planning. I have also taught college credit classes at CMSU for several semesters.

I also have over 30 years working experience in information technology, human resources, financial services, consulting, and corporate management. I have held positions on boards of directors for NonProfit organizations and for the retirement plans of a $100 billion investment firm.

My education and career experience has provided me indepth knowledge of finance, law, contracts, personnel, and other issues that will very likely come before the Board of Education.

In addition, my family has lived in the Turner district for many years, and our children graduated from Turner High (as did my wife, her parents, and her grandparents). Our grandsons, for whom we are guardians, are currently attending Turner Elementary and Turner Middle School.

So, I am quite familiar with the school district.

2.    As a candidate, what would be your top three priorities as a member of the board of education?

(1)    Maintaining a focus on the best interests of the students;

(2)    Determining the best application of limited funds to advance the quality of education within the district;  and

(3)    Promoting the district and its educational system, which I know to be able to provide a solid educational foundation for students to be successful in whatever career paths they choose.

3.    A two-part question - What distinguishes you as the top candidate for this position and what differences should voters in Wyandotte County look at before making their choice?

(1)    My superior education and career experience which has proven my leadership and decision-making skills; and

(2)    My belief in the Turner district as a solid place to raise a family and educate our children.


4.  Another two-part question. School finance is obviously one of the most important issues in any school district. First question – would you be willing to increase property taxes if state funding doesn’t increase? And the second question – if you wouldn’t support a mill levy increase, what would you cut in the budget to help hold the line on taxes?

(1)    There are many discussions going on about how to cover the costs of education required for our children to succeed. I do not think any solution should be summarily rejected, even though I feel that increased taxes on personal residences should be one of the last resorts.

(2)    If the Board decides that a mill levy is required, then a prioritization of all budget items needs to be performed to ensure that the items most critical to providing a quality education are covered first.


5.  What in your opinion are the three biggest challenges facing Turner as a school district? (If you feel there are more than three to list, feel free too.)

(1)    Covering critical expenses during financially challenging times;

(2)    Providing a secure environment for our students; and

(3)    Continuing to provide successful education programs, as measured by standardized testing.