Sam Garcia, School Board, Place 1

Sam Garcia, School Board, Place 1

What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment as a public servant?My work with the Workforce Solutions Board has enabled me to help people get a job which can change their lives. I was recently awarded the W.O. Lawton Business Leadership Award for small business by the National Association of Workforce Boards .{{more}}What do you feel like is the greatest challenge facing the Abilene Independent School District, and what would you do to solve it?I believe we need a change in the way we look at how we equip our children to face today’s career market. We need to better equip them with more work skills to be prepared to take advantage of future careers opportunities that have not even been developed yet. I believe we begin to address this by having more dialog between education and workforce and employers.Sometimes the citizens have a cynical attitude when it comes to elected officials. The attitude is a we versus them attitude. What are you doing or what will you do to foster an environment where every citizen feels important in AISD?You address that by being engaged with them. You have to “show up” when they have events or want to discuss issues. I believe the more engagement the better we understand each other.How do you believe the citizens of Abilene can help make things better for the students of AISD?We can ask our citizens to be more involved in their neighborhood schools by volunteering and supporting our educators. What makes you uniquely qualified to serve on the School Board?My previous school board experience, workforce experience, business experience and community involvement make me the most qualified candidate in this race.*According to a poll conducted by The Associated Press – NORC Center for Public Affairs research, they found that more than 8 in 10 Americans favor a federal law preventing mentally ill people from purchasing guns, along with a federal law expanding background check requirements to include gun shows and private sales. How would you feel, if that was implemented in Abilene and Taylor County?I do not know the answer to this question. I would need time to research this before I could speak to the issue.It appears that we will probably have a large number of young voters engaged in the political process, because of the 17 individuals killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland FL. Do you agree or disagree with their activism and why? Do you have a message for them?I am very excited about our students and others increased engagement. The recent march held here in Abilene attracted almost 300 people which many were young people.Do you believe that a person’s character is important in holding elected office? If you do please list one character trait one should have and state why you believe it’s important?Yes, it’s extremely important and I feel my passion for giving back to my community is what drives me to be involved.We have seen campaigns where individuals have been extremely mean to each other. Could you pay your opponent one compliment?My opponent is a very kind hearted and compassionate individual. It’s easy to say that Tim Delavega’s hearts in the right place.If you could have dinner with anyone from the past or currently living, who would it be and why?Morris Dees. I would be honored to break bread with a real warrior. He has fought hate for many years through the Southern Poverty Law Center.Tell us a little about your family, hobbies, etc.I’ve been married to my wife Norma for 26 years and I have two children, Andrew and Katherine. Both of which will graduated from Texas A&M University in May of this year. I have been associated with State Farm Insurance for almost 30 years. I am a graduate of Texas A&M University School of Business and have been extremely involved in my community my entire adult life.