By Candy Reagan, Editor
The addition of new school board member Chris McCurley has gone largely unnoticed thanks to all the media attention given to the recent Wylie bond election.
But McCurley took office at the June meeting of the Wylie school board where he was sworn in with returning board members Stephen Lowry and Mark McClellan. Both Lowry and McClellan ran for re-election this spring, and all three were unopposed. McCurley will finish out the year that is left on the three-year term of Alice Church who moved away a year ago. Long-time board president Ray Templeton has filled the spot for the past year.
McCurley, the preaching minister at Oldham Lane Church of Christ, said he threw his hat into the ring for the open position because he has a passion for education and a desire to help in the community.
“I have no agenda,” he said. “I’m not coming in to fix things. I want to be a part of something great, and we have something great.”
Before he was called to ministry, McCurley was a high school teacher and coach at a small school in Arkansas.
“I really enjoyed it, but I was not home much,” he said. “You are constantly stretched thin. After awhile it took a toll.”
When an opportunity to go into ministry fell into his lap, he grabbed it and has never looked back. But he still has an interest in education and decided that serving on the school board might be a way he can help.
“This allows me to stay connected in a different way,” he said. “This is something worthwhile and something I am passionate about. It’s about the kids first and it’s about being fiscally responsible. I just want to help the board grow and be as good as it can be.”
McCurley and his family moved to Abilene seven years ago from southwest Missouri. He said the job at Oldham Lane appealed to him because he could focus on one part of his ministry.
“I wanted the opportunity to do just preaching,” he said. “At a smaller congregation, you do everything.”
Abilene also offered an opportunity for his wife of 19 years, Libby. She has taught kinesiology (the study of movement) at both McMurry and ACU during the last seven years.
His daughter Keely graduated from Wylie in May and will attend Freed-Hardeman University this fall. He also has a daughter, Zoe, who will be a sophomore at Wylie this fall, and a son, Zane, who will be a freshman.
He said his family loves the Wylie community.
“We thought we had it good were we were at,” he said. “But coming here was such a blessing. We prayed for a strong church with a strong youth group. It was everything we prayed for. We love it here.”
McCurley said he believes that the recent support for the bond election and the lack of opponents in the school board election is proof that the community is pleased with the work that the board is doing. He is proud to now be part of that effort.
“I think there’s a good barometer to show that people are pretty happy,” he said. “I think I am going to enjoy (serving on the board), and I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish.”