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School Board District 3 Race Has Been Heavily Contested


By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, March 1, Republican voters go to the polls to select the District 3 Alabama Board of Education member. The incumbent, Stephanie Bell (R) is being challenged by Greater Birmingham Young Republicans Chairman Justin Barkley in the Republican Primary.

Stephanie Bell said, “My opponent has spent over $100,000 from business interests and out of state funders trying to push Obama’s Common Core on Alabama’s schools, and on YOUR children. Please help us fight back by sharing this video with everyone you know in SBOE District 3! The Eastern half of Bibb County, all of Chilton County, all of Coosa County, all of Elmore County, part of Montgomery County, all of Shelby County, all of Talladega County, and the Homewood and Mountain Brook areas. Please help us spread the word!”

Justin Barkley said that he agreed with Alabama Governor Bentley’s letter to President Obama asking the President to stop pressuring the states on education. Barkley wrote, “I agree with Governor Bentley. The Republican-sponsored Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) can work if it achieves its stated goal of reducing federal involvement in education. From the article: “The ESSA is the first piece of legislation since [the establishment of the federal Department of Education] to place limits on the scope of federal power.” We are headed in the right direction, but we have to remain vigilant as the ESSA is implemented to ensure that it does reduce the federal role in education.”

Justin Barkley grew up in Montgomery and Hoover and attended public schools. Justin, graduated from Hoover High School and has a degree from Harvard University and a law degree from the University of Alabama.

Justin is Chief Administrative Officer and General Counsel for a Chelsea-based healthcare company. He previously worked as an attorney. Justin and his wife, Melissa, live in Homewood. They have four children and attend Riverchase United Methodist Church in Shelby County.

Justin is Chairman of the Greater Birmingham Young Republicans, a member of the Jefferson County Republican Party Executive Committee, and a member of the Associate Board of the Alabama Policy Institute.

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Stephanie Bell has received many honors, including the Hugh O’BrIan Legacy Award, the “Friend of Education” Award, the Emma Sansom Heroine Award, and the Alabama Eagle Award for her work for “God, Family, and Country.”

Bell was a reporter for the ‘Montgomery Advertiser’ /’Alabama Journal reporter’, Stephanie covered education, the courts, and the Legislature. She received a CASE II Media Award from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, Alabama Press Association recognition in the Best News Story category, and a Hector Award nomination for meritorious reporting.

Bell has a degree in English from Auburn University. She is a Jefferson Davis High School graduate, and attended Montgomery Public Schools. She served on the Governor’s Domestic Violence Advisory Council and is a longtime member/sustainer in The Junior League of Montgomery, served in numerous capacities, including the League’s Board of Control.

Stephanie Wolfe Bell has been married 35 years to attorney John C. Bell. They have two grandchildren (Betsy and Abby) and three daughters. Their son is deceased. They are members of Trinity Presbyterian Church.

The Alabama Republican Primary is Tuesday, March 1. Alabama does not have party registration so any registered voter can vote in whichever major party primary they choose on that day, without pledging loyalty to that party in the general election.

Polls open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 7:00 p.m. Alabama law requires that every voter present a valid photo ID. at the polls in order to vote. Forms of photo ID accepted at the polls are any of the following valid documents: driver’s license; Alabama photo voter ID card; state issued ID (any state); federal issued ID; US passport; employee ID from Federal Government, State of Alabama, County, Municipality, Board, or other entity of this state; student or employee ID from a public or private college or university in the State of Alabama (including postgraduate technical or professional schools); Military ID; or Tribal ID.


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Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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