New board of education members sworn in to office - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

New board of education members sworn in to office

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Joe Wingate (left), Kathy Lennon (center) and Tiffanie Robinson are sworn in Thursday morning. Joe Wingate (left), Kathy Lennon (center) and Tiffanie Robinson are sworn in Thursday morning.
HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

Hamilton County officially has three brand-new school board members. 

They won the election last month and took the oath of office to begin their terms Thursday morning, incumbent Rhonda Thurman was also among them. 

Criminal Court Judge Tom Greenholtz and Assessor of Property Marty Haynes also took the oath. 

The historic day was special for the three new members of the school board nearly one month after three incumbents lost their seats. 

The new members say they're ready for better transparency and a change in leadership as they begin their four-year terms. 

The first order of business is the search for the new superintendent. 

"I think I'm anticipating on getting a better handle on who these search firms are and asking a number of questions to find the best firm possible to do the right work," District 4 member Tiffanie Robinson said. 

"I've been reading a lot of policies and procedures. I've been meeting a lot of people, I've reached out to the principals of the schools in District 2. I've been to Rivermont Elementary already," District 2 member Kathy Lennon said. 

As the new members get settled into their new roles, they're also preparing to face challenges, like issues surrounding the Ooltewah rape case. 

While we wait for the three teens convicted in the case to be sentenced, the district is bracing for a civil suit the victim announced would be filed any day now. 

"I'm glad that the perpetrators were held accountable for their actions. I'm glad that that did happen," District 1 member Rhonda Thurman said. 

"I think it's a really painful process that everyone's going through. I think it's going to take some time. It's going to take time to heal from everything that's happening," Lennon added. 

"There are some challenges, there has been some adversity but I really feel like a lot of opportunity can come out of adversity and I really feel like we can create some positives, so I'm really looking forward to it," District 7 member Joe Wingate said. 

Details of that civil suit are still unclear. 

The new members will meet in their official roles for the first time next week for an agenda session. 

The next regularly schedule board of education meeting is set for September 15th. 

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