Hope School Board Service Extends Beyond Education

Hope School Board members have contributed time and talent to a variety of community service endeavors apart from their service to the Hope Public School District. Current board membership includes, left to right seated, Zone 6 Representative and Secretary Kathryn Dickinson and Zone 5 Representative and Vice President Linda Haynes; and, standing, left to right, Zone 4 Representative Jimmy Courtney, Zone 8 Representative David “Bubba” Powers and Zone 7 Representative Alvis Hamilton. Not pictured are Zone 1 Representative Viney Johnson and Zone 3 Representative and Board President Willie Buck. – Ken McLemore/Hope Public Schools

HOPE – The public service commitment of the seven members of the Hope Public Schools Board extends beyond their roles in directing the policies, vision and business of the school district as the HPS observes School Board Appreciation Month through January.

Each board member is involved in other public service activities that span church, public policy, youth and professional engagement.

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Two board members, Zone 1 Representative Viney Johnson and Zone 7 Representative Alvis Hamilton, serve as church pastors. Johnson serves as pastor of Goff Chapel AME Church in McCaskill and Hamilton is associate pastor of St. James Missionary Baptist Church in Lewisville.

Zone 5 Representative Linda Haynes is active in the Hope Church of Christ Ladies’ Ministry and Youth Ministry. Zone 6 Representative Kathryn Dickinson serves as secretary of the Hope First Baptist Church Sunday School Department and as a member of the church kitchen committee. Zone 4 Representative Jimmy Courtney is an active member of Unity Baptist Church in Hope, while Zone 3 Representative and Board President Willie Buck has been active at Lonoke Baptist Church where he is chairman of the Board of Deacons, and is assistant dean of the southwest district, and a member of the Gideons.

Dickinson, who resides at Guernsey, is currently the treasurer of the Guernsey Volunteer Fire Department and serves as president of the Hempstead County Master Gardeners. She and Courtney have also been active in the Hope-Hempstead County Chamber of Commerce, where Courtney has also served on the board.

Both of them have been active in the Hempstead County United Way, with Dickinson serving as a board member and president, and Courtney serving on the United Way board.

In his capacity as a criminal investigator for the Hope Police Department, Courtney has also served on the Arkansas Criminal Detention Facility Review Committee, and Hamilton has been certified as a police officer by the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy.

Both Buck and Dickinson are retired educators, Buck having retired as dean of the business department at the University of Arkansas-Hope in 2010, where he was named Educator of the Year in 2010. Dickinson retired from the Hope Public Schools as a campus secretary, first grade teacher and assistant principal after 37 years of service. She has since taught as an adjunct faculty member at UA-Hope.

Powers has served in the Arkansas House of Representatives from Hempstead and Nevada counties in three terms from 2007 – 2013, where one of his key committee assignments was the House Aging, Children and Youth Committee. He also served on the Arkansas Legislative Council, Joint Budget Committee, Joint Performance Review Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. Powers returned to school board service in 2017 after having served as a board member from 2004-2007.

Courtney has extensive youth mentoring service through his membership since 2012 in the Hope Kiwanis Club, where he served as president in 2016 and this year. Kiwanis is the sponsor of the Key Club for youth in the Hope Public Schools. Courtney has also served as president of the Hope Athletic Booster Club since 2018, and has been athletic director of the Hope Wildcat Youth Football Association since 2015. He has also been active in youth mentoring through his employment at the Hope Police Department.

Hamilton, who is retired from the U. S. Army, has served in the Arkansas National Guard and the U. S. Army Reserve, and was on active duty in the Army for 22 years. He has Masonic affiliations with Rose of Sharon Lodge No. 100, S.T. Boyd Consistory 32nd Degree, and Amman Shrine Temple No. 82.

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