Here are the candidates who want to fill the vacancy on the Wake County school board

Seven people have applied to fill the vacant seat on the Wake County school board that represents most of Southeast Raleigh.

The applicants are Sean Callan, Damion O. Lewis, Tammy Martin, Robert Morales, Toshiba Rice, Jayna Victor and Michael T. Williams. The district has not yet released their application packets.

The school board will interview the applicants on Feb. 13 and make their selection then. The new board member would be sworn into office Feb. 20.

The District 4 seat became open after vice chair Tara Waters resigned to accept a seat on the Wake County Board of Commissioners.

The new board member will finish Waters’ term, which expires in November. The new board member could also run for a 4-year term on the November ballot.

Wake County school board members Lynn Edmonds, Sam Hershey, Lindsay Mahaffey, Cheryl Caulfield, Chris Heagarty, Tyler Swanson, Tara Waters, Dr. Wing Ng and Monika Johnson-Hostler take a group photo after being sworn into office on Dec. 6. 2022. The board is now filling the vacancy caused by Tara Waters’ resignation.
Wake County school board members Lynn Edmonds, Sam Hershey, Lindsay Mahaffey, Cheryl Caulfield, Chris Heagarty, Tyler Swanson, Tara Waters, Dr. Wing Ng and Monika Johnson-Hostler take a group photo after being sworn into office on Dec. 6. 2022. The board is now filling the vacancy caused by Tara Waters’ resignation.

Proof of eligibility sought

On Tuesday, the board gave one of the applicants 24 hours to provide additional paperwork proving residency in District 4. Board members said they wanted more documentation than the W-2 form the candidate had submitted..

“The burden of proof is necessary given this person also has the ability to run from this seat this year,” said school board vice chair Monika Johnson-Hostler. “For me, I don’t think we should beat ourselves up for both being lenient and granting grace to human beings, because for me that’s important.”

The board will interview an applicant who didn’t submit all their paperwork by the 5 p.m. Friday filing deadline. The person had submitted some paperwork at 4:59 p.m. and the rest at 5:17 p.m.

The board implemented new requirements for applicants to prove their eligibility after Craston Artis was picked in January 2022. Artis withdrew before he was sworn in when questions were raised about whether he misrepresented that he lived in District 4.

“With the doubts we’ve experienced in the past, we’re asking them to do this to pursue this opportunity,” said board chair Chris Heagarty.