Delta accountant seeks school board spot

COVINGTON -- An accountant originally from South Georgia wants Newton County students to be able to compete in a global society.

Kevin Wade, 28, who is an accountant with Delta Air Lines at its headquarters at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, qualified this week with the Newton County Republican Party for the District 3 seat on the Newton County Board of Education. The seat is currently held by Cathy Dobbs.

"I have a 4-year-old entering pre-K at Palmer Stone," Wade said Friday. "I want to be more involved since I want to get the best education for him. ... I want to get involved and make a difference in our community and in our schools."

Wade, who is from a small town near Valdosta, said he moved about four years ago to Newton County, where his wife, Amy Cheek Wade, and her family originally are from because of its high-quality school system.

"It's a great county to live in," he said. "And it gives us both city life and country/rural life."

When he was in South Georgia, Wade served as a substitute teacher and a mentor for school-aged children for several years. He is a graduate of Valdosta State University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in business administration with a major in accounting.

Since working as an accountant for the last several years and living in Newton County, he decided to run for his first elective office.

"I feel like with my experience I have in accounting that we can look at differing aspects of how to better serve the Board of Education and the schools," he said.

If elected, he wants to help make sure students are equipped to compete in a global society and place emphasis on what takes place in the classroom.

"Even in recessionary times, we need to preserve the classrooms and do everything we can to attract and keep the best teachers for our children in Newton County," he said in a statement.

Wade plans to accomplish this with a focus on creativity, listening and involvement.

He wants to look at administrative costs that can be moved to classrooms and teachers and explore outsourcing to the private sector in order to create more jobs in Newton County.

He also wants to get involved in area communities and plans to hold listening sessions across the district to hear from the people. For more information, he invites the public to e-mail him at electkevinwade@gmail.com or visit his Facebook group.

Wade also serves as president of his homeowners association in Gum Creek Landing, is a student pastor at Calvary Baptist Church, is a member of the Delta Go Team that initially responds to crash sites, and consults the Stone Mountain Baptist Association's youth leaders and pastors.

In addition to the District 3 seat, Johnny Smith's District 1 and C.C. Bates' District 5 seats are up for re-election this year on the Newton County Board of Education.

Qualifying for the Newton County Board of Education election ended at noon Friday.