On Monday, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announced he is endorsing Hillsborough County School Board District 2 incumbent Stacy Hahn in the November General Election.
Hahn is running for her second four-year term on the body governing the third-largest public school district in the state and eighth-largest in the nation. Before winning the District 2 seat in 2018, she unsuccessfully ran for the District 6 seat in 2014.
“I’m beyond honored to have Sheriff Chronister’s support,” Hahn said. “As a current School Board member, I‘ve had the privilege to work with respected community leaders, like Sheriff Chronister, to create policy that best supports our children and moves our school district forward. I embrace the opportunity to expand on this work because every child deserves a high-quality education.”
Chronister and Hahn both have about 30 years experience in their respective fields. Hahn has been an educator and administrator working through nearly every grade level. Chronister has been with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) since 1992. Then-Gov. Rick Scott appointed him Sheriff in 2017 after the retirement of David Gee.
HCSO works closely with the school district. HCSO provides school resource officers and crossing guards, and offers training throughout the district.
“Stacy Hahn has been a great partner with law enforcement to protect students and remains the best choice for Hillsborough County’s District 2 School Board seat,” Chronister said. “Her heart is with the children of this community and I know she will continue to work tirelessly to further opportunities for all students and improve our school system. I have worked side by side with Stacy these past three years and she has proven herself to be a champion for the most vulnerable in our community.”
Hahn’s only challenger so far is Damaris Allen, an education activist and former president of the Hillsborough County PTA.
School board races are nonpartisan, but have become ideological battlegrounds. Allen is a Democrat while Hahn is a Republican. Florida School Board meetings and races have become especially tense. Parents have waged war over COVID-19 protocols, even showing up at private residences of board members and filing false reports of child abuse and other crimes against members who had supported masking mandates. And with last year’s Parents’ Bill of Rights being joined with a bevy of controversial new laws — including those governing racial history, gender identity and sexual preference — Florida’s 2022 School Board races could be among the most unexpectedly consequential in the state.
The 2022 General Election will be held on Nov. 8. School Board terms are four years and members earn a salary of $46,773.