Secretary Wayne Williams to honor Douglas County school board

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams will present an award to the Douglas County Board of Education Tuesday night. (Carol Lawrence, The Gazette/Special to the SOS)
Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams will present an award to the Douglas County Board of Education Tuesday night. (Carol Lawrence, The Gazette/Special to the SOS)

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams on Tuesday will honor the Douglas County Board of Education for its “phenomenal” program that that pairs education and elections.

All nine Douglas County high schools cancel classes on Election Day and use the facilities as voter service and polling centers. Students serve as election judges and rather than being paid individually for their work, the money is donated to that student’s favorite school activity.

For its effort, the school board will receive a NASS Medallion Award from the National Association of Secretaries of State, an award given to those who make an enormous difference.

Williams will present the award to the Douglas County school board at its work session at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the board offices, 620 Wilcox St. in Castle Rock.

“When I was El Paso County clerk we had school districts that told us we couldn’t use their facilities. We had one that told us we could but informed us right before the election that they were no longer available. We wound up scrambling to find a replacement site,” Williams said.

That facility had already been weatherized for the winter, and the clerk’s office had to bring in space heaters for the elections judges.

Attorney John Moye, Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams and former Secretary of State Donetta Davidson after their NASS Medallion Award ceremony in 2015.
Attorney John Moye, Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams and former Secretary of State Donetta Davidson after their NASS Medallion Award ceremony in 2015.

And that’s why the Douglas County school district stands out, Williams said.

“Voters have plenty of places to park. The election judges have been able to raise thousands of dollars for various programs. And the students get credit for public service, which they need to graduate,” he said.

“It’s a pretty phenomenal program. I hope it inspires other school districts.”

Williams last year handed out NASS Medallion Awards to former Secretary of State Donetta Davidson and attorney John Moye.