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Rusten resigning from BISD board

October 24, 2011

Johnny Rusten

A longtime Borger ISD board member has officially submitted his resignation.
Johnny Rusten, who has served on the board for the past 13 years, and most recently held the position of president, has made the decision to step down.
“Throughout our lives, seasons come and seasons go. One of the greatest seasons of my life was the most recent thirteen years of my life as a trustee of the Borger Independent School District,” Rusten said in a letter submitted to BISD superintendent Chance Welch. “It is with regret that I must end that special time in my life with this letter of resignation.”
He said that nothing he has ever been a part of has helped mold him and make him a better man than the years he has spent around the board room table and around some of the finest men and women in this world, fellow board members, professional educators, and fine support staff.
“I have been honored to serve side by side with some incredible people on the BISD board,” Rusten said. “To be able to be mentioned on the same lists as these past and present boards humbles me.”
He said to watch, to get to know, and learn to appreciate the hundreds of adults who have committed their careers to the well-being and education of children, his respect pours out toward them all.
“For the most part, people have no idea how tough, how challenging, the job of a BISD employee really is,” Rusten said. “The way you all deal with the government, the parents, the details, deadlines, co-workers, taxpayers, the mandates and so many other aspects of your careers and still get your jobs done is simply amazing.”
He said that at the present time, God is doing a lot in his life.
“Brenda and I have been so blessed with our three daughters. One has been married for six years now and has given us our first grandchild,” Rusten said. “Our second is about to be married this coming February. Our youngest will soon be our last to graduate from college and will soon become a school teacher herself.”
He said the college ministry at Frank Phillips College that he and his wife are involved in is in its eighth year and is as strong as ever. In addition, the company that he and his partner run has continued to be blessed.
“With my partner relocating recently to the Dallas area, my time demands have increased,” Rusten said. “This, along with my desire to focus on the growth of our family, gives me little choice than to step away from a few things – the biggest, of course, being the business of BISD.”
He said people know that when they serve they give, but they also need to know that when they give like a board trustee they receive much more in return.
“I have learned so much about leadership, organization, and delegation watching you [Welch], Cliff Stephens and Larry Coffman take full responsibility for and running Borger ISD,” Rusten said. “I have been fortunate to be in hundreds of different places across our campuses over the years – classrooms, offices, kitchens, gyms, fields, and more – to see one common thread and that is the enormous amount of pride taken by each and every district employee to do their job and to do them right.”
Rusten said he would never have made it over the past 13 years, especially as board president, without the efficiency and friendship of Tina Briscoe, saying she is special to so many in the district.
“Knowing that all district employees struggle with personal issues in their careers, yet get their jobs done, like watching Rhonda Batterman do her job, challenges me forever,” he said.
He said some of his fondest memories serving on the board revolve around attending workshops and learning at TASB conventions, as well as dining out, with early board members Ken Sheppard and Paul Belton up to the most recent newcomers, Kent Gray and Les Sharp.
“I cannot put a value on the schooling that I received on the board while sitting under strong leaders as board presidents like Elaine Feese, Gary Schneck, Dave Brandon, and Hugh Goldston,” Rusten said. “Those people are dedicated and tireless.”
He said he has been very impressed with people like Charlotte Williams and Todd Harris, who have shared their minds and their time on behalf of the district. He also said he never got tired of watching Robert Bradley hug and love on people as a leader of the district, nor did he ever get tired of watching tears come to the eyes of David Cano as he talked about his love for the Hispanic community within BISD.
“To be surrounded by you all, I have been blessed,” Rusten said. “I will always be in your corner. Thanks again for the opportunity of a lifetime.”
The BISD board will be working on procedures for bringing in a new board member, most likely by requesting letters of interest from those interested in serving. Since Rusten was serving as president, the board will reorganize its slate of officers in November, and will appoint a new member in December.

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