Reeve Ashcraft: An early start in public service

Being a member of the Prince George school board keeps local Reeve Ashcraft pretty busy, in addition he also has a job as a server at the Ruby Tuesday in Hopewell. There is one more thing, he’s only 19!

In 2011, Ashcraft moved to Prince George and attended school at N.B. Clements Junior High School. He later attended high school at Prince George. He said that during school he was really into journalism and sports. He even wrote for the school paper and was a member of the yearbook staff.

Reeve Ashcraft with Daniel Moore, friend, and Katherine Vaughn, Senior at Prince George High School at Ashcraft's swearing in ceremony in January
Reeve Ashcraft with Daniel Moore, friend, and Katherine Vaughn, Senior at Prince George High School at Ashcraft’s swearing in ceremony in January

“I was initially accepted to Christopher Newport University, Virginia Tech, Hampden Sydney, and Randolph Macon,” Ashcraft said. “I chose to attend Richard Bland as a way to both get my education and run for the Prince George School Board. I finished high school with a 4.3 GPA and finished my freshman year at Richard Bland with a 4.0.”

Ashcraft was elected to the school board on January 1.

“Since then, we have passed the budget for the 2016-2017 fiscal year,” Ashcraft said. “We have gone through the steps upgrading our comprehensive plan for 2016 through 2021. He have focused on a lot of different things.”

Ashcraft is employed by Republican Party as a field director for the tri-cities.

“I really try to be a voice for transparency, and also for our students,” Ashcraft said. “One of the big things we’re looking at doing this school year is adding a level of student representation to the school board.”

Family of Reeve Ashcraft helping with the campaign
Family of Reeve Ashcraft helping with the campaign

Ashcraft said that he is proud of his work, and he wants the school board to be an organization that his fellow citizens can be proud of too. Another new member who has been appointed to the school board during Ashcraft’s career is Renee Williams, who is the first African-American to serve on the board.

“With immense cooperation from the Board of Supervisors and County Administration, we were able to pass a budget that provides staff a 2% pay increase, an added $500 to each HSA tier for health insurance, and one that promotes growth in technology and CTE education as a whole,” Ashcraft said.

Another thing Ashcraft said the school board is currently working on is implementing a pilot program for the 2016-2017 school year in which Board members will be visiting with secondary school students to discuss their concerns and issues, and using this as a way to listen to a collective voice of students.

“I brought this to the attention of the fellow Board members and the Administrative team at our yearly retreat back in February,” Ashcraft said. “We have been working hard to get it in place for this upcoming school year.”

Another thing Ashcraft said the school board is looking at doing is different technology initiatives. The goal is to see how they can bring the student handbook up to 21st century learning.

Graduation with father, Percy Ashcraft
Graduation with father, Percy Ashcraft

Ashcraft explained that his father, Percy Ashcraft who currently serves as the Prince George County administrator, is one of his main sources of motivation. He wanted to be a strong leader like his father. He also said he wanted a way to make a difference in the public school system, and he had some disagreements with the current board members.

“It’s one thing if I just sit here,” Ashcraft said. “I say I disagree with this, and I complain about that but if I don’t have the audacity to stand up and try to make a difference in my community, than what am I really doing?”

Ashcraft said he got to where he is because of all the people that he had met through the activities he participated in during high school. He is proud to be able to make a difference in his community.

“My favorite part about serving on the school board is seeing what can happen when we put student success FIRST. Prince George has the best kids, the best teachers, the best bus drivers, the best staff, and the best citizens any local community could ask for,” Ashcraft said. “As a representative for the school system and for the people of Prince George, I believe it is my responsibility to use our resources wisely and responsibly to lead with honesty, and to never hesitate to ask for guidance from both staff and God.”

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