FAIRBANKS — Silver Chord will remain a school board member, following a special meeting’s outcome Monday evening. The Fairbanks North Star Borough Board of Education met to determine whether Chord’s resignation at an early August meeting was valid, and if it was determined so, to accept or decline his resignation.
At an Aug. 2 meeting, Chord said, “Much to the relief of the board, this is my last board meeting.”
The informal resignation was never fully recognized and no seat vacancies to the board were announced because Chord’s intentions were unclear.
Days after the meeting, he sent an email to the school board president, Kristina Brophy, retracting his resignation.
Brophy sought legal advice to respond to the resignation in absence of a clear policy. She called a special meeting, knowing it might be viewed as an attempt to oust Chord from the board, but its purpose was for Chord to voice his intentions, she said.
Board member Wendy Dominique read aloud the motion, “It has been determined that school board member Silver Chord has resigned.”
There was no second from other members of the board, which included Chord and Leslie Hajdukovich, and president Kristina Brophy announced that the matter could not be discussed any further.
Brophy turned to her legal counsel, attorney Jim DeWitt, to clarify whether Chord’s retraction of his resignation still stood.
Dewitt said a second to the motion would not have meant a board member supported the motion but that the member wished to discuss the motion. A vote would have come later. He could not say whether the resignation still stood or not.
Since the matter was closed, it was determined Chord would keep his seat.
Chord was allowed time to discuss his intentions. He called his Aug. 2 announcement an “outburst of frustration,” and said, “I owe the staff an apology.”
“I have decided to stay on the board,” he said.
Brophy followed his statements with some of her own, explaining the reason for calling the special meeting.
“I believe that though board service can often be challenging and frustrating, in order to be effective, we individually need to decide whether we’re either all in or all out,” she said. “A commitment or lack of commitment should not be determined by a written confirmation, but instead our intent should match our actions and words. As difficult as the last nearly two weeks have been, I do not regret calling this special meeting and resolving this issue once and for all.”
Chord expressed his relief after the meeting and said, “I hope we can come back together and work as a unit.”