Ashe County Board of Education race set for November

By Alan Bulluck

July 21, 2014

November is over three months away, but the results of this year’s Ashe County Board of Education election is already a foregone conclusion.

Filing for the 2014 Board of Education race ended on July 7.

Three seats are up for grabs in this year’s election and it appears those seats will remain in the hands of the current occupants, barring some overly miraculous write-in campaign by a well-known candidate.

Incumbents Polly Jones, Charles King and Terry Williams were the only individuals who filed to run in the nonpartisan election.

The trio have a combined 28 years of service on the Board of Education.

All three incumbents are Ashe County natives and taught in Ashe County Schools.

Board members C.B. Jones and Dr. Lee Beckworth aren’t up for reelection this year.


Jones is a graduate of Ashe Central High. She earned an Associate of Arts degree from Wilkes Community College before transferring to Appalachian State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She spent two years teaching in Grayson County, Virginia while working on her Masters Degree.

From 1984-1999, Jones taught English at Beaver Creek High School. After consolidation, she taught at Ashe County High School from 1999-2010.

During her teaching career, Jones was honored three times with the Teacher of Year Award and once as Ashe County Teacher of the Year. She is a North Carolina English Teacher of the Year, United States English Teacher of Excellence and a National Board Certified Teacher. She also served on numerous school and state committees, especially on writing curricula.

More recently, Jones was named executive director of the Sharing Center.

Jones was first elected to the Board of Education in 2010.


King is a graduate of the old Lansing School. He attended Lees McRae College for two years before attending North Carolina State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Education in 1958.

King spent a year working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture before returning to Ashe County to accept a vocational agriculture teaching position at Beaver Creek High School. He spent 33 years in the classroom before retiring.

During his years in the classroom, he received awards from the state and national arms of the FFA.

King was first elected to the Board of Education in 1994. He’s served as the board’s chairman during all five of his terms.


Williams, like Jones, is one of the more vocal, outspoken members of the board.

He’s a lifelong resident of Ashe County and a graduate of ASU.

Williams retired from the Ashe County school system after 32 years of service as a Social Studies teacher. He served as the Chair of the Social Studies Department for 11 years while at Ashe County High School. He was also selected as the North Carolina Social Studies Teacher of the Year for the 2008-2009 school year.

Williams was first elected to the Board of Education in 2010.

This year’s general election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 4.

Alan Bulluck can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @albulluck.