I, Phil G. Brown, am announcing my candidacy for the Natchitoches Parish School Board seat representing District 4. District 4 includes areas surrounding Sibley Lake, portions of NSU’s campus, and areas north to Posey Road.
Over the years, I have been the beneficiary of the Louisiana public education system: graduating from Baton Rouge High School; and B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemical Engineering from Louisiana State University. My Ph.D. work was done at the University of Cincinnati in Environmental Health (Industrial Hygiene). My work experiences in governmental and private industry jobs have allowed me to see the benefits of education.
We the people of Natchitoches Parish want: high quality schools for ALL our children, a more cooperative/less divisive School Board, more direct employment from high school skills certification and apprenticeship programs, and educational relationships built with local industries and businesses. When elected, I will actively advocate and work to achieve the “wants” of our Parish.
Growing up in Baton Rouge, I first experienced Natchitoches at Christmas as my family drove to my grandparents’ home in Shreveport. Highway 1 crossed Cane River Lake on the Church Street bridge, and the lights reflected brilliantly in the water. It was a highlight of the trip.
In my senior year at LSU, I met Mary Lou Pierson from Natchitoches, daughter of Ed and Gingie Pierson. We married in 1967 and entered the United States Air Force in 1968.
While stationed at Brooks Air Force Base (AFB), San Antonio, Texas, our three children were born. Subsequently, our children attended public schools in Ohio, Virginia, and Utah.
My assignments in the US Air Force included: the USAF School of Aerospace Medicine, Brooks AFB, Texas; the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, US Department of Labor, Washington, DC; the USAF Surgeon General’s Office, Washington, DC; the Air Force Secretary’s Office, the Pentagon; Hill AFB, Ogden, Utah; and the Air Force Logistics Command Headquarters, Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio. Upon completing nearly 24 years in the U.S. Air Force, retiring as a Colonel, in 1992 I went to work for the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, New York.
Working within the Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) Organization of Kodak, my responsibilities included budget development for the HSE Organization, HSE Information Technology oversight, development and implementation of an electronic medical record system for Kodak employees, and Deputy Director of the Kodak Medical Department. Following 11 years of employment with Kodak, I retired in 2003 and Mary Lou and I move “home” to Natchitoches.
In 2004, I joined the faculty of Northwestern State University as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Engineering Technology where I taught for 12 years. During this time, I noticed problems with some students’ backgrounds in such basic foundation issues as fractions, which concepts would become a major obstacle for them.
I searched for tools within the elementary and secondary system to assist teachers in assuring students understood and could successfully demonstrate the application of these concepts. It was at this point I found a potential solution for enhancing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curricula.
I am a huge advocate of “Project Lead the Way (PLTW),” a program which provides curricula and tools for teachers to teach STEM. In 2009, with the assistance of our NSU President, Louisiana Board of Supervisors and Regents, NSU was authorized to become the PLTW Engineering Affiliate University for the State of Louisiana. I became its Affiliate Director. Since 2009, we have trained many teachers from Louisiana and other states. I am always willing to share information and my excitement about PLTW with anyone who will listen about this excellent program.
Every place we have lived over the years, we have become involved in the local community. I have enjoyed being part of Natchitoches’ community and have served and continue to serve in several ways: Cane River Food Pantry board member; APHN past treasurer; Habitat for Humanity past president; “Lunch on Us” mission, First Presbyterian Church. We have also enjoyed supporting some of Natchitoches’ treasured programs: Natchitoches Northwestern Symphony Society, NSU’s Creative and Performing Arts Theatre, and our Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame.
I thank the voters of District 4 who have graciously spent time with me at their homes as I have walked your neighborhoods, introducing myself. To those District 4 voters who have been recipients of my door hang tag, I am sorry we did not have the opportunity to directly visit. To those who have not seen me yet in their neighborhood, I’m on my way!! I believe my varied professional experiences, as well as my passion for a solid education system, will serve Natchitoches well. To all voters, I greatly appreciate your consideration of my candidacy, and humbly request your votes in the upcoming election, Tuesday, November 6, 2018.
Once elected, I look forward to serving on the Natchitoches Parish School Board. I will devote myself to helping improve our schools and building relationships with industries and businesses which will support our children.
Most Importantly! Remember to vote!
It’s your right and responsibility as a United States citizen!
P.O. Box 1075
Natchitoches, LA 71458