FAMU grad making bid for Gadsden school board


Kenneth Thomas, a graduate of Florida A&M is running for school board in Gadsden County. Gadsden County is the only majority African-American county in Florida, and Thomas wants to serve on the county school board. The seat is currently held by Steve Scott. According to the Gadsden County Supervisor of Elections website, there are more than 29,000 registered voters in the county.

Born in Quincy, just 20 miles west of Tallahassee, Thomas is proud of his hometown. While living in Quincy at an early age, he attended the public schools in Gadsden County, where he was able to receive career training.

In 2006, Thomas graduated from East Gadsden High School. While in high school he was also dual enrolled at Tallahassee Community College. He received his associate degree after leaving high school. He later furthered his education at Flordia State University, where he obtained a bachelor’s in information technology in 2008. He also has two master’s degrees; Thomas graduated from Florida Institute of Technology with a master’s in information technology and he recived a master’s in business administration from FAMU in 2015.

“My degrees are only one form of evidence to the commitment I have made to be a life-long learner and maximize the investment made in me by so many Gadsden County educators,” said Tomas.

He announced he was running for school board on June 15. “I come from a family of educators and more specifically a family of educators with deep connections to Gadsden County,” said Thomas. “My experience watching my family impact the lives of so many are one of the reasons that has served as a catalyst for me to enter the race.”

Thomas Believes that the students of today’s Gadsden County deserve the same type of educational advocates that he had during his time as a student. “I understand the desire to ensure that we work tirelessly to ensure we do our part to develop the most educated generation of students. I am competent and up to the challenge of creating sustained growth and improvement in Gadsden County,” he said.

Thomas’ major focus, if elected to the school board, is to promote growth and excellence within Gadsden County by partnering with the business community as a vehicle to increase external funding to support students, inform career development curriculum and enhance the economic opportunities of the county. Also, he wants to get parents and students to find value in Gadsden County schools and reverse the decline in enrollment and invest in new curricula approaches such as STEM and create unique career development apprenticeship programs.

“Kenneth is smart and has the heart to help others,” said state Rep. Ramon Alexander.  “He will do an excellent job serving on the school board because he deeply rooted, and he knows the issues.” Thomas worked as Alexander’s district secretary.

Thomas believe that a vote for him to join the school board represents a mandate from the citizens of his district for greater transparency and public input in decision-making; enhanced student development and experience; and for Gadsden to have a stronger presence in educational policy on the state level.

He faces two other candidates running to serve District 2.  He encourages Gadsden County residents to visit his website for more information on his campaign at KennethThomasJr.com.