Steve Martin

Candidate for Union County Board of Education - District 6


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Paid for by the Committee to Elect Steve Martin, P.O. Box 1593, Matthews, NC 28106

Phone: 704-254-4789

Welcome to my campaign website.

I am running for the Union County Board of Education - District 6, which includes Marvin, Mineral Springs, Waxhaw, Weddington, and Wesley Chapel.

Union County students, parents, teachers, and residents need and deserve new leadership on the Board of Education.

I am running for the District 6 seat to provide steady, common sense leadership that makes the education of students - in person, in school - my top priority.

I am running to ensure that all UCPS students attend a great school that is open and ready to help them reach their potential.

I am running to support our teachers, and to make UCPS the district in North Carolina where the best teachers want to be.

I am running to listen to and respect the views and needs of all UCPS parents.

If you're ready for new leadership on the Board of Education, I would be honored to have your support. I want to learn your hopes and dreams for our Union County students and schools, to understand your concerns and areas where our schools can improve, and to hear your ideas for how to best fulfill the mission of the Union County Public Schools - "Preparing All Students to Succeed."

Core Issue 1 - Educating students - in person, in school - must be the top priority.

Students learn best when they are physically in school interacting directly with teachers and their peers. But in the 2021-22 school year, the Board adopted and reaffirmed the mask-optional policy that has resulted in thousands of students (between 2.5% and 14% of the student body in any given week) sitting at home rather than being in class.

By reaffirming its mask-optional policy even as new COVID variants have swept through the County (against the recommendation of the Superintendent, the health director, and pediatricians across Union County), the Board guaranteed that hundreds or thousands of healthy students will miss school every week this fall, and also failed to provide a safe, healthy learning environment for students and staff. The Board’s decisions disrupted and derailed the in-person education of students, injected chaos into already frustrated parents’ schedules, overburdened teachers, school nurses and administrators, drawn a rebuke from the Board of Commissioners, and cast Union County in a negative light across the State and nationally.

It’s not about masks. It’s about keeping healthy students safely in school, and minimizing the disruption to our children’s education. The current Board majority has made its mask-optional policy - and not educating students in person, in school - its top priority. Our children and community continue to suffer from the decisions of this Board.

If elected to the Board, educating students - in person, in school - will be my top priority.

Core Issue 2 - Steady, common sense leadership. Put children first. Get politics out of the school board.

The mission of UCPS is “Preparing All Students to Succeed.” That’s a mission that brings the communities in Union County together.

When all students succeed, our County succeeds. Education is too important to the lives and futures of our children to be a partisan political issue.

But too often, the current Board brings politics and political ideology into its meetings and decisions.

If elected to the Board, I will fight to put our students first and keep politics out of the decisions of the Board.

I will work in good faith with anyone who wants to improve our schools, and keep partisan politics out of the UCPS.

Core Issue 3 - Excellent schools, open and ready to educate all students.

Union County, and District 6 in particular, are blessed with some of the best schools in the State. That’s a credit to the teachers and principals, to the tireless work of the parents and PTOs, and to the generous support of the taxpayers of Union County.

I will work to ensure that every UCPS student attends a great school, with access to all of the opportunities, resources and supports they need to achieve their best.

Core Issue 4 - Support teachers, and make UCPS a place the best teachers want to be.

Teachers are the heartbeat of our schools. A great teacher can make all the difference in a child’s life.

If elected to the Board, I will make sure teachers are treated like the critical resource and the well-trained professionals they are, work to provide them with salaries and benefits that reflect their value, and make UCPS the North Carolina school district in that the best teachers want to come, live and work.

Hire great teachers, give them the supports they need and the respect they deserve, and trust and empower them do what they are trained to do.

Core Issue 5 - Listen to and respect all UCPS parents.

I am the parent of three elementary-aged girls enrolled in UCPS schools. Parental involvement is critical to the education of students, both in fostering and supporting a love of learning at home and in supporting the schools as a community. Parents have both day-to-day and long-term perspective on what is working (and not working) with their children's education in our schools, and can bring forward good ideas for how we can improve our schools.

Today, responses from current Board members to parent concerns and suggestions, if they respond at all, are too often short and dismissive.

If elected, I will listen to and respect the ideas, needs and concerns of all parents, and will work to address those needs. I am genuinely interested in hearing and understanding the perspectives and needs of all UCPS parents, and in making the Board of Education responsive to those needs and concerns.

The reasons I am running - our three daughters.

About Me

My wife, Trinity, and I are the proud parents of three amazing daughters enrolled at Weddington Elementary School. Our family has lived in Wesley Chapel since 2017.

I was born and raised in Ohio. My dad is a retired United Methodist pastor, and that meant we moved to different churches while I was a kid, all of them in Northeast Ohio.

My mom was a public school elementary teacher before I was born, and then ran a church preschool while I was a toddler. We moved to a new church the summer before I started kindergarten, and she went back to school to become a dental assistant. I remember going to her graduation from her dental program when I was around 6 years taught me that education can be a lifelong pursuit.

Home for me is the Cleveland area (and all the professional sports heartache that comes with it). I graduated from Eastlake North High School in 1993.

I went to undergrad at Ohio Wesleyan University, a small liberal arts college in Delaware, Ohio. I was active in the music program, playing French horn in concert band and orchestra, and trumpet in the jazz band. In my junior year, I was a White House intern during a semester in Washington, DC. I graduated in 1997 with a bachelor's degree in Politics & Government, with minors in History and Religion.

After college, I worked for 2 years for a small community non-profit organization in Columbus, Ohio focused on drug abuse prevention. It was a great first job with a great mission, and it gave me the opportunity to work in the city, build networks, and improve lives and communities.

In 1999, I moved to Chicago and started law school at Northwestern University School of Law. I graduated in 2002 with my law degree, with concentrations in Civil Litigation & Dispute Resolution and in Law and Social Policy.

While in law school, I began dating my wife, Trinity. We had met several years before and had remained friends, but in my third year of law school that friendship became a romance. Trinity is from a small rural community in central Ohio, and when we started dating she had just finished her undergrad degree in Music Theory & Composition from Belmont University in Nashville. Trin was starting a masters program in the School of Music at UNC-Greensboro, which is how we ended up in North Carolina.

After graduation from law school, I became a member of the bar in North Carolina and the District of Columbia, and began practicing health care and insurance law at a large law firm in Washington, D.C. When Trin finished her Master's degree the following spring, we got married and moved to Maryland. In the fall of 2004, Trin returned to UNC-Greensboro to begin work on her doctorate in choral conducting and to teach in the School of Music and serve as the music director of a church. We moved to Greensboro, and then bought a home in Burlington.

In early 2005, I began practicing law in the Raleigh office of a large, Southeastern law firm, eventually becoming a partner in 2011. Initially I was focused on business litigation, but over time my practice grew to include a significant amount of work for healthcare clients. In 2015, I had the opportunity become an in-house attorney with a healthcare client, where I remained for 7 years.

In the fall of 2014, after years of praying and hoping for children, we were blessed with the birth of our twin girls, Gwen and Evvy. Seventeen months later (on Leap Day 2016!), our third daughter, Harper, was born.

In 2017, my job moved to Charlotte, and we looked all over the Greater Charlotte area to decide where we wanted to move. We were drawn to Union County because of the great public schools and the ability to purchase the home we wanted with a lot of land. We love our community in Wesley Chapel, have made so many great friendships, and our girls are thriving in the Dual Language Immersion program at Weddington Elementary.

We are members of St. Francis United Methodist Church on McKee Road in Charlotte, where Trinity is also the Director of Music.