After interviews with candidates for the vacant Tuckahoe District seat the day before, the Henrico County School Board named the three finalists Friday.

The board interviewed special education advocate Melissa Dart, former Douglas Freeman High School physics teacher Marcie Shea and former Lakeside Elementary School Principal Bill Pike.

Lisa Marshall, the former Tuckahoe District representative on the board, resigned last month after announcing she is continuing treatment for breast cancer.

Within several days of Marshall’s announcement, Dart, a recent Democratic candidate for the House of Delegates, announced her interest in the Tuckahoe seat.

Dart currently serves on the county school division’s Special Education Advisory Committee and has a child with special needs enrolled in county schools.

“I think [Marshall] has done great work, but I think this is an opportunity to amplify other voices that haven’t been heard as much before,” Dart said.

In a series of tweets following the school division’s announcement Friday, Shea extolled her experience as a former teacher and parent.

“Having been at both sides of the table, educator and parent, it is my goal to strengthen the relationship between policy, parents, and faculty as we all seek our common goal: the success of each student,” she said.

Originally hired by Henrico schools in 1979, Pike retired several years ago and is currently the director of operations at Trinity United Methodist Church.

Pike said he has never had political ambitions, but felt his experience as a school administrator and an English teacher for various grade levels could be helpful to the School Board.

“There seemed to be an opportunity to help out in a tough situation,” he said. “I felt my experiences make me qualified to pursue it. I just thought I would see what would happen.”

There were 11 applicants for the seat Marshall vacated last month. At least two former School Board members, Stuart Myers and Tom Veazey, applied but were not selected for interviews Thursday.

The School Board will select its appointee on Sept. 20. The appointee is expected to serve the remainder of Marshall’s term.

All seats on the board will be up for re-election next year.

The board previously requested that interim appointees not run for the seat in the election year. The last two appointees to fill a vacancy attempted to run for office anyway, but neither was elected.

School Board Chairwoman Michelle F. “Micky” Ogburn has said the board will not take into consideration whether the three finalists intend to run for the seat next year.

Dart and Shea are planning to run for the seat next year. Pike said it is too early to say whether he will consider it.

Anyone interested in speaking at a public hearing Thursday may sign up in advance by calling School Board clerk Debbie Ward at (804) 652-3808 or emailing dnward@ henrico.k12.va.us.

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