It has been decades since a Democrat was elected leader of the Frederick County state delegation, and Democrat Frederick County Executive Jan Gardner will have the opportunity to appoint a member to replace the soon to be vacant Frederick County Board of Education (BOE) slot.
Interestingly, incoming Democratic District 3-B State Delegate Ken Kerr is the reason for both.
Kerr won a slot on the nonpartisan BOE in the 2016 election and after overtures from the state Democratic Party, he decided to run for state delegate in District 3-B. Frederick County BOE has a seven-member elected board with a student member who are elected in staggered terms in nonpartisan elections.
In the 2012 redistricting, District 3-B was made more competitive for Democrats. However, in the 2014 election, Republican William “Bill” Folden beat Democratic candidate Stephen Slater.
In this election, Ken Kerr (D) and Bill Folden (R) ran unopposed in their primaries and Kerr (10,091–52.4 percent) beat Folden (9,168–47.6 percent).
When asked about his win, Kerr said, “I’m surprised some people are calling this an ‘upset’ election. While I’m sure some people are upset about it, there’s nothing upsetting. Over 4000 new voters have moved into the district in the last four years and the district has changed. There are now more Democrats than Republicans, and my platform of middle class values—education, transportation, and affordable healthcare—reflects that change and more closely represents the values and priorities of 3B voters. It is not so much an ‘upset’ as it is a ‘reset.’”
Kerr’s election now evens up the Frederick County state delegation with four Democrats and four Republicans. Outgoing Republican District 3-B State Delegate Bill Folden has already proposed Carol Krimm, Democrat state delegate in District 3-A, for new delegation leader.
When asked if she was interested in being elected leader, state delegate Krimm said, “I am definitely interested in the position. The position is not appointed but voted on by the delegation. Someone needs five votes of the eight delegation members to assume the position. I will discuss the possibilities with the delegation members.”
Krimm added that the new members traditionally elect the leader during the first public hearing, which will be held at Winchester Hall in Frederick on Dec. 8.
District 3 State Senator Ron Young (D) said, “In all likelihood we will alternate chairs between parties over the next four years. I look forward to the Delegation working well together.”
As a result of Kerr winning the District 3-B state delegate race, he will be resigning from his BOE seat. County Executive Gardner will appoint a replacement to serve the remaining two years of Kerr’s term.
Frederick County voters just elected four BOE members and three of the four winners were endorsed by the Frederick County Teachers Association. Camden Raynor, who did not win, was the fourth candidate endorsed; he said that he is looking forward to applying for the position. “I’m applying for the BOE vacancy because I believe that I have the knowledge, experience, and personality to be an excellent member of the BOE,” Raynor said. “There are several qualified candidates applying, and I look forward to the county executive’s decision.”
Jay Mason, who won one of the four slots on the board, said, “After getting to know Camden, campaigning with him, listening
to him during forums, and learning how educated he is on school issues, he would be a great pick.”
Current Vice President of the Board April Fleming Miller, who lost in her re-election bid, is also likely to apply for consideration.