Taylor sole SOCSD Board candidate


Staff Writer

The Starkville-Oktibbeha Consolidated School District Board of Trustees will see a new face come November.

Jamila Taylor is the sole candidate to qualify to run for the vacant school board seat. Taylor ran for a school board seat in 2016, ultimately losing the race to board Vice President John S. Brown. She is married to state Rep. Cheikh Taylor, a Starkville Democrat, and has two teenage children, Starkville High School senior Leilah Taylor and sophomore Ahmir Taylor. She has lived in Oktibbeha County for 17 years. Taylor will be on the ballot for the Nov. 6 General Election.

“I have been working in the Starkville- Oktibbeha School District for many years at many different levels from being a parent advocate to serving on the school district strategic planning committee for their plan,” Taylor said. ”I like the direction that the district is headed in, and I’m just wanting to be a part and add to that.”

She said she hoped to continue the district’s forward-thinking course.

“I’m wanting to continue to be innovative in our technology approach and in our academic programs that we’re serving our students in, making sure that in what we’re doing in our pre-K program all the way to our 12th grade and our career and tech programs, that we are offering innovative academic learning and programming and technology, that all children are able to succeed,” Taylor said.

Taylor is originally from Coppell, Texas and holds a bachelor’s in nursing from Howard University in Washington D.C., along with an MBA from the University of Phoenix. She has served as the associate director for the Early Years Network, a Mississippi State University Extension program focusing on quality childcare. Currently, she serves as associate director for community outreach and development at the extension.

She said even though she is running unopposed, she still plans to put herself out in the community ahead of the election.

“I don’t take it lightly that I am running unopposed, but I am excited,” Taylor said. “I am excited about the opportunity.”

Taylor will run for the seat currently filled by Keith Coble, who is not seeking re-election after a decade of service on the school board. The seat is one of two school board seats elected by citizens of Oktibbeha County, with the remaining three appointed by the Starkville Board of Aldermen.