Newly elected Prince George’s Board Chair Judy Mickens-Murray (right) sits alongside Vice Chair Lolita Walker, who was elected to her position in the previous board meeting. (Anthony Tilghman/The Washington Informer)
Newly elected Prince George’s Board Chair Judy Mickens-Murray (right) sits alongside Vice Chair Lolita Walker, who was elected to her position in the previous board meeting. (Anthony Tilghman/The Washington Informer)

The Prince George’s Board of Education has a new chair: Judy Mickens-Murray.

“I’m glad they have a new Chair and are moving forward”, said former Board member Belinda Queen. “With this change, I hope they will all work together for the betterment of the students of Prince George’s County.”

On Jan. 12, the Prince George’s Board of Education held one of its first meetings since new members were sworn in with the goal of electing a new chair to lead the Board. This was Dr. Juanita Miller’s final meeting as Chair of the Board, and newly elected Member Lolita Walker’s first meeting as the Vice Chair. 

Before listening to testimony from audience members, Chair Miller introduced newly elected Board members Walker, Jonathan Briggs, Brandon Jackson and Walter Fields. 

Shayla Adams-Stafford and Mickens-Murray both sought the position of chair. In a previous meeting, neither Mickens-Murray nor Adams-Stafford were able to secure a majority of votes and become Chair. 

The election was conducted by a secret ballot with 13 votes cast —  five for Adams-Stafford and eight for Mickens-Murray. One Board member chose to abstain from the Chair vote. 

Mickens-Murray is currently an at-large appointed member.  Her first motion was to adjourn the session. 

Former member Queen was concerned that the meeting was a violation of the Open Meetings Act, as all votes during her tenure were conducted via roll call, according to existing procedure. 

The Policy and Governance Committee presented findings on 32 various policy recommendations, including procedures regarding renaming of school facilities.

Takia Toomer, a community schools coordinator at Hillcrest Heights’ Panorama Elementary, was awarded a certificate for her dedication and wealth of knowledge that she has used to assist her students and the surrounding community. Toomer is also the Executive Director of Judge Me Now, a nonprofit focused on eliminating illiteracy and early exposure to STEM opportunities. 

The first virtual work session will be on Jan. 26 at 5 p.m., and the virtual budget hearing will follow at 7 p.m. Board meetings are available virtually via YouTube and the Board website.

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