Ferguson seeks Place 3 on LHISD Board

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It didn’t take Michael Ferguson long to decide he wants to be more involved in his community.

He’s a life-long Texan, and has lived in Liberty Hill for three years, where he has one second grader and one first grader in the district.

The culture and feel of Liberty Hill was just right for him and his family.

“The biggest thing for me is I was raised in a small town, and one of the biggest reasons we moved to Liberty Hill was because it still had that small-town culture,” Ferguson said. “My parents raised me to help people and I’ve always been drawn to help our youth.”

He has been involved in youth sports locally, and found himself absorbed in the district’s business when he was selected as a member of the Long Range Planning Committee.

“I was really dumbfounded over a lot of the data we received about how fast we were growing,” Ferguson said. “I was able to see how our facilities just are not equipped to handle that and saw how important it was to get this bond out and approved so we can have those facilities to provide our kids essentially the education they deserve.”

He counts three individuals who have recently served on the school board as close friends, and said their departure helped spur his decision to run in Place 3.

“I’m good friends with Clay Cole, Clint Stephenson and David Nix,” Ferguson said. “I would never have run if those guys were still on the board, but being that Clay retired, Clint got upset in his race and David retiring, I thought it was my duty to carry that torch and continue this journey as we go into the next chapter of our district.”

He spoke to each about his decision and what he should expect.

“I’m a firm believer that if you don’t listen to the people that were in that role before you, you can take a lot of wrong paths,” Ferguson said. “I just asked them what it was that gave them the fire to do it, what was their experience and what was their recommendation to me.

“They all said it revolves around the kids. They said it will take as much time as you give it and I feel like that’s important because I am giving to my children and my children’s friends.”

And a focus on kids is what Ferguson said he brings to the table as a candidate.

“A lot of people that run for school board do it for an agenda or they say they’re doing it for their kids,” he said. “I’m doing it for all the kids and the reason I say that is because my kids are entangled with other kids at school every day. I know my kids are going to have plenty of opportunities to be able to have a good education. But there are some less fortunate kids out there my kids may be friends with. I’ve seen it in our youth league, and I’m compassionate about it and feel for them. I want them to have the same opportunities my children have had.”

Ferguson is a regional sales and office manager for a company providing pipes, valves and fittings in the water, sewer, natural gas and energy markets – something he has been involved in for 17 years.

“I work with a team of sales people, and I am responsible to make sure we are achieving operational excellence in our region covering six states,” he said.

That business experience has taught him many lessons, but the one he points to first is knowing when to listen.

“The biggest thing I’ve learned in my profession is a lot of times people just want you to listen and not try to offer a rebuttal before they are finished telling you what they want to tell you,” he said. “Listen to them, absorb it and then respond to what they are truly trying to tell or ask. I feel like that is my greatest strength. That will equip me to listen to our community, understand what their heartaches are based on and be able to work with the Board and Mr. Snell to resolve that or ease the pain.”

He added that it means taking care of and listening to parents as well as district staff.

Being an outspoken supporter of the bond proposal, Ferguson also encourages people not to forget the candidates in the May 1 race.

“What I would encourage people to do is do the research on the bond, but don’t get so lost in the bond that you don’t look at the candidates running,” he said. “Make sure you vet the candidates and see what qualifications they have.”

Being a part of a community he says impresses him every day is something Ferguson said is critical to him.

“We’ve been faced with COVID, we’ve been faced with a winter storm, and if anything, I’ve seen the compassion that neighbors and the community has for one another,” he said. “We are so glad we’re in Liberty Hill and so glad our kids got to school in LHISD, and honestly that’s what I want to project and help emphasize – that culture and the academic excellence.”

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