The Walker County Board of Education has appointed a healthcare manager to fill a vacancy on the board.

The school board, during a called work session Dec. 21, unanimously approved Karen Harden’s appointment to fill the unexpired term of Carthell Rogers, who died Nov. 16 unexpectedly.

The board had accepted applications from volunteers to fill the District 2 seat until its term expires Dec. 31, 2022.

“I contacted the board because of my desire to represent my district,” Harden said.

“I raised my children in this district, and I can relate to the community. I look forward to having a voice for my district.”

Harden works for Conifer Health Solutions, which serves CHI Memorial. She said she has volunteered on many committees and was active with school activities as her children were in school.

“At this time my priorities are to review the needs for the school in my district and for all other Walker County schools,” she explained.

“I have a desire to make the best decision to support our schools and ensure our children receive the best education,” she said. “My desire is to ensure the students are prepared for graduation, college, work and life.”

Harden said she knew her predecessor Rogers through his roles with recreation, adding “I had great respect for him, and I have big shoes to fill.”

Board member Mike Carruth made the motion to approve Superintendent Damon Raines’ recommendation to appoint Harden, and board member Dale Wilson seconded.

Catherine Edgemon is assistant editor for the Walker County Messenger in LaFayette, Ga., and the Catoosa County News in Ringgold, Ga.

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