Dear Voters;I’m running for the At-Large seat on the EVSC School Board. This is the first of a several  articles that I will be sending to area media to make the case for electing me to represent the public’s view on the School Board. The EVSC schools are one of the strongest factors in building a prosperous future for Evansville and Vanderburgh County, and it is important for voters to know the positions of all of the candidatesI want to stress that I’m not directly tied to partisan politics and do not have a past career as a school teacher or administrator. If elected to this position, the life skills I will bring to the EVSC school board is very different from that of the current Board members and my opponents. I believe that the key to the success or failure of our community’s future economy is to find creatve ways to stop the “brain drain” that this area has suffered from for many years.We have too many schools that are failing with “F” grades or just “getting by” with a “D” grade from the State of Indiana. It’s time for to us find innovative ways to address and correct the current failures at select Center City schools in Vanderburgh County.

It is important that our school board facilitates a strong relationship between our schools and the potential employers of this area. Broadening the educational horizons of our young people not only is important to all, but it is vital for those in our most poorly performing schools. I strongly believe we can do a better job in convincing our students of the potential for having a good future here. We have to develop the resources to motivate our young people to make their best efforts and remain in this area.

With Evansville being chosen for the State Pre-Kindergarten pilot program, there is an especially exciting challenge for the EVSC Board in the coming year. We have the chance to prepare our children for a smooth transition into school by preparing them educationally and socially to make their best efforts and be on their best behaviors. At the same time, we will have the opportunity to help parents learn to put their “best foot forward” and to support their children’s efforts. The final choices in all of the plans and approaches to make a successful Pre-K program will be in the hands of our School Board. I have a firm committment to study the strongest existing programs and use the techniques with the best outcomes as a pattern, in order for EVSC to lead the way to a strong, permanent program.

There are the traditional and ongoing challenges of running the largest school district in the state to be met, as well. I will work to help see to it that we “stretch” tax dollars to get the most value available, and utilize all of our resources as fully as possible. It is also necessary to see to it that the support staff is paid a living wage, as they play an extremely important role in the future success of our schools, and they deserve recognition for their role. Loss of revenue to the public schools due to vouchers, a shrinking tax base, and dropping Common Core is a huge challenge to the future of our schools and needs to be met by Board Members from a variety of viewpoints.

I am committed to dedicating my $6,000 plus stipend, which is paid to School Board members, to the Teacher’s Scholarship Fund and will not accept the $18,000 plus health insurance paid to Board members.

In conclusion, I believe the EVSC School Board needs a more diverse and independent make-up than it now has, with the inclusion of people from business and other professions, rather than the majority being professional public servants and educators, only. The actual classroom, the point of student-teacher contact, is my first concern. Our students, teachers, and support staff absolutely must have energetic and informed representation on the EVSC Board. Because of that belief, I have chosen ” A Vital Voice for Our Students and Teachers on the EVSC Board” as my campaign slogan. I am asking for your vote on Nov. 4, 2014 if you agree with me.

Tony Ricketts
Candidate For At Large EVSC School Board



  1. Ralph Cramden Reply

    August 27, 2014 at 6:38 pm

    Mr. Ricketts you have my attention! It seem to show real sincerity and you have done your homework , that is what I think the voters want to see. Now to get some more candidates to step forward and show this kind of honest and straight forward thinking we can fill those school board positions with new blood .

  2. elkaybee Reply

    August 27, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    I think Mr. Ricketts is a fine example of the kind of people we need in decision-making roles for all of our boards, commissions and councils, but most especially for the School Board.

  3. txpayer Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 12:01 am

    Mr. Ricketts,
    Can I ask why you would donate your salary to the teacher fund? It can be quite a stressful job that I feel deserves compensation. Although, it does seem to be a good method to use to get votes. You mention you are pro teacher but also attack the failing schools, while offering no solution to the problem. Could you further analyze your reasoning for the donation, as well as provide details of how you feel you could bring these schools overall grade to a higher status?

    • Tony Ricketts Reply

      August 28, 2014 at 10:22 am

      I’m going to donate my stipend because it’s not about money or insurance for me. I want to be on the School Board because I’ve been a tax payer and a parent who has put children through the EVSC.I have that experienc! I see it as a contribution to do something good for the community I love.

      I am not attacking the failing schools. I’m just like you. I’ve been reading about these schools and I feel we need to change their direction. I’m interested in finding solutions to do this.

      I just want to get the chance to roll up my sleeves and be a part of the solution!

  4. Rails&RobertsStadium Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 2:49 am

    This is incredible leadership. In fact it hearkens back to the days of Bosse. I always said if I was mayor I’d donate my salary. This guy is making good on that idea.

    Two things I’d like to see him address right off the bat…

    1. Fix, keep, and rejuvenate Old North High School Gym. I’d like to be a part of this effort myself.

    2. Embrace vouchers. I’m tired of public schools fighting this common sense and fair program just because it doesn’t help them. It’s time that public school officials respect and support vouchers for families making < or = $82k.

  5. Win With Chinn Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 7:57 am

    Sorry, we don’t need a car salesman representing what the schools really need. We need someone who is willing to invest their time not give back a couple comps. Car salemen aren’t known for being honest. Sounds like another of Dr Dave’s, planted candidates. VOTE NO!

    • Concerned Citizen Reply

      August 28, 2014 at 9:31 am

      Wow, what a statement! Car dealerships are responsible for hundreds of jobs in our community!Car dealerships and their employees are tax payers. Where would be without them?

      Look around at what people who sell cars have done for this community. How about the football stadium at Harrison High School? Would Mr. Chinn want to have Mr. Romain’s name taken off of the sign over there? He sells cars!

      What about the contributions the Kent family, the O’Daniel family or the Duall family have made to the benefit of education in this community? If Mr. Chinn doesn’t want those votes, I’m sure Mr. Ricketts does!

    • Bandana Reply

      August 28, 2014 at 11:05 am

      Unusual way for you to try to bolster Chinn’s candidacy.

      Mr. Ricketts is offering to donate his remuneration for serving on the School Board, $6,000 worth, to the Teachers Scholarship Fund. Declining the health benefits probably won’t impact anything at the $18,000 level but it will have some significance and sure is a nice gesture. I cannot understand what in the world is wrong with any of it. Anything even approaching actually serving for the public good rather than personal nest feathering is very rare, generally unheard of in these parts.

      Wipe the spittle from your chin.

    • Silverdome30 Reply

      August 28, 2014 at 2:41 pm

      Lose with Chinn, is what will happen if he is elected to the school board !! We don’t need another bobble head 0n that board. Putting up fancy designs and giving the school a fancy name does not help the student get a better grade or make him a better student. Just what are your plans Mr. Chinn?????? VOTE FOR TONY RICKETTS FOR AT LARGE

  6. Ralph Cramden Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 10:32 am

    CONCERNED CITIZEN You have hit the nail on the head. Evansville car dealerships bring in people from all over the tri state who spend money here in Evansville god bless them. WIN WITH CHINN who seems to disrespect Mr. Ricketts for his occupation has chosen to back an outsider ! Is this how Mr. CHINN who claims to know nothing of Evansville political history want his followers to respond? Maybe that is how they do it where Mr. CHINN came from…

  7. Clean it up Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Car salesmen aren’t the most honest of people, besides that, what is Mr Ricketts, ideas? He wants to learn as he goes? Has he ever been in a classroom since his own school days? Schools have changed as the school board hasn’t. Schools are in terrible shape, we tout the ISTEP scores, but pretend the 5 failing schools we have now and more to come next school year, don’t exist! We need all new leader ship, yes, it is nice that Mr Ricketts, wants to give his money back but, that small amount of money is a drop in the bucket to the over all picture. What’s he going to do about a super intendent , who says, we are going to vote and if you don’t show up your lack of attendance is a NO vote, that would be like saying every citizens vote is going to be counted this Presidentusl election and for those who don’t show up automatically is a straight democratic ticket, isnt that wrong. You don’t understand the problem if you think the problem is only in the classroom. It starts at the top and that’s the super intendent and the school board. So my choice and vote is for Chinn, for I have spoken to him and he has a plan!



  8. Julie Gilham Reply

    August 28, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    Don’t assume that because a name says Win With Chinn that it’s Mr. Chinn. If you’re curious about where he stands call him. 812-207-1170

    Side note: Mr. Chinn didn’t have to call 5 minutes after a vote to congratulate Teamsters on a win and ask for an endorsement. He’s been supportive since day one. (I’m his daughter, AND A TEAMSTER!)

  9. Clean it up Reply

    August 29, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Correct, try Key Automotive,

  10. Pressanykey Reply

    August 29, 2014 at 7:01 pm

    “There are the traditional and ongoing challenges of running the largest school district in the state to be met, as well.” (Tony Ricketts)

    * * * * * * * * * * * * *


    EVSC is not the largest, or even the second largest school district in the State.



  11. Ralph Cramden Reply

    September 2, 2014 at 10:06 am

    When are we going to hear from the other at large candidates ? They are out putting up signs but are not addressing the issues for the voters to review! Maybe they are the bobble head candidates.

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