The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

TCC board of trustees election upcoming

Bill+Greenhill%2C+Larry+Dale+Carpenter+Jr.+and+Laura+Forkner+Pritchett+are+running+for+the+District+4+seat+on+the+board+of+trustees.+Early+voting+started+on+April+24+and+ends+May+2%2C+Election+Day+is+May+6.+Photo+by+Joel+Solis%2FThe+Collegian
Bill Greenhill, Larry Dale Carpenter Jr. and Laura Forkner Pritchett are running for the District 4 seat on the board of trustees. Early voting started on April 24 and ends May 2, Election Day is May 6. Photo by Joel Solis/The Collegian
Bill Greenhill, Larry Dale Carpenter Jr. and Laura Forkner Pritchett are running for the District 4 seat on the board of trustees. Early voting started on April 24 and ends May 2, Election Day is May 6. Photo by Joel Solis/The Collegian
Bill Greenhill, Larry Dale Carpenter Jr. and Laura Forkner Pritchett are running for the District 4 seat on the board of trustees. Early voting started on April 24 and ends May 2, Election Day is May 6.
Photo by Joel Solis/The Collegian

ALEX HOBEN
editor-in-chief
alexandra.hoben@my.tccd.edu

Tarrant County voters will be selecting two members of the TCC board of trustees in its election that ends May 6.

The board is composed of seven elected officials who represent districts throughout the county. Early voting started April 24 and ends May 2, and Election Day is May 6.

District 4 has three candidates running: incumbent Bill Greenhill, Larry Dale Carpenter Jr. and Laura Forkner Pritchett. Greenhill was initially elected to the board in May 2010, and he’s seeking his fourth term as trustee. District 5 has two candidates: incumbent Leonard Hornsby and challenger Jabranica “Nikki” Stroba.

Jack Reynolds’ name will also appear on the ballot for District 4, but he has since suspended his campaign and given his endorsement to Carpenter Jr.

“Larry committed to me personally that he would be a voice for the staff and faculty at TCC,” Reynolds said. “Their issues and concerns have gone unaddressed for far too long, and they have languished too long in a toxic work environment that elevates sycophantic obedience over effective educational instruction and leadership.”

Carpenter Jr., a former TCC student, has run previously for county commissioner and is the son of former Tarrant County sheriff Don Carpenter. His campaign is mainly focused on the taxpayers and representing them within the board because he feels the trustees are not doing a good enough job, he said.

“The board is obviously not representing the taxpayer, and that’s actually completely proven in the way that they’ve acted recently with raising of the taxes,” he said.

The main point of contention between the candidates in District 4 is the property tax rate levy approved in September 2022. While the tax rate itself did not change, property taxes still raised for Tarrant County residents due to rising property appraisals.

Carpenter Jr. said another main point in his campaign, if he’s elected, is to take a deep look into the bond program at TCC and determine whether the money they are spending on projects such as the construction of NW and SE is justified. He also said he would be analyzing the diversity, equity and inclusion policies in place. He said he has received calls from multiple faculty members who are dissatisfied with the way TCC is run right now.

“With the Brandon administration creating such a toxic environment and hiring people based upon race and not on merit, this is not good for the entire county, is not good for our state, is not good for our country,” Carpenter Jr. said. “We will put an end to this, but first off, we have to get people in position that are willing to tackle that, and that’s one thing I’m willing to do and work towards.”

He also wants to focus on special education programs and see what the board can do to improve them. 

Greenhill said the main aspects he has enjoyed as a trustee is going out to community events and seeing TCC students and staff, and that’s one of the main reasons he put his bid in again. 

He said he is incredibly proud of the actions that he and the other trustees have initiated over his past terms and looks forward to, if reelected, continuing that work for the sake of TCC.

“The main goal of these times is ensuring – budget wise – keeping the college affordable for all and having quality education and affordable education, as you might expect we have,” he said.

Greenhill said he thought his opponents were turning this nonpartisan office into a partisan election with their campaign strategies. He said he focuses more on what the college is doing for the community and the student’s experiences.

“This is something that I feel like it’s important to do because community college, as you well know, has a huge impact on our community,” Greenhill said.

Greenhill, a corporate attorney for Haynes & Boone, has held other community college leadership positions such as being a former chairman of the Community College Association of Texas Trustees.

Pritchett is currently a Tarrant County Republican precinct chair 4340, and is also the director of North Texas for Restore Liberty, a group dedicated to restoring the original values and doctrines of the Constitution. The main issues addressed on her website are also to stop over taxing, eliminate Critical Race Theory and DEI and to focus on job skills instead of larger tuition.

In District 5, Hornsby was initially elected in May 2021 in a special election due to his predecessor Mike Evans being elected as mayor of Mansfield, and this marks his first full four-year term . For Hornsby, the position of trustee means serving to ensure the future economic success of Tarrant County through the way  TCC prepares their students for future careers.

“I have a love for TCC as a former student, employee and now as a board member being to serve the community and the students in particular to make sure that they receive the best education, have the best opportunities to increase their ability to earn income in our community, thereby having a great economic impact in our community,” Hornsby said.

Stroba, an Arlington ISD educator, is committed to performing a financial audit on the budget, lowering the property tax burden, prioritizing education over administration, eliminating race-based hiring practices and wants to prioritize trade-based program enrollment.

Neither Pritchett nor Stroba responded to messages seeking comment by press time.

District 4 covers West Fort Worth, North Richland Hills, Azle, Haslet and Haltom City while District 5 extends into Arlington and Mansfield.

“Voting is always important, no matter who you vote for,” Hornsby said. “Exercising your right to and to make your voice known is always important. If you don’t vote, you’ve said ‘I don’t care.’ And then if you don’t care, you shouldn’t complain about anything that happens or how anything goes.”

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