Seeking re-election based on achievements of past four years

Josh Brown and his family.


Hello fellow Wakulla County neighbors, my name is Josh Brown and I am respectfully requesting that you grant me the opportunity to continue building upon the successes that we have achieved for our school system over the last four years.

In 2020 you elected me on a simple campaign promise: that I would do my absolute best for your children and our county as your District 4 School Board Member. While there remains work to be done, I am extremely proud of the achievements that we have made, some of which include:

  • Returning the Wakulla County School System back into the top 10 statewide in testing results, (No. 9 currently) while simultaneously being near the BOTTOM statewide in state funding. Talk about overachieving!
  • Together we were able to raise the graduation rate for our students from 10th statewide in 2020 to first in 2024. You read that right, the Wakulla County School District, which is one of the least funded districts, leads all other Florida school districts in the graduation rate for our students!
  • Increasing the minimum pay for teachers by over 21% during the last four years, the largest four-year increase in the school district’s history. While this was a huge feat, there’s more work to be done to ensure that our teachers not only receive better pay, but more importantly, have more take-home pay.
  • Improving the safety of our schools by adding more School Resource Officers and School Guardians. It’s unfortunate that the state of our society has necessitated these additional resources, but I’m proud that we were able to act proactively during my first term. We have one of, if not the highest SRO/student ratios in the state.
  • Obtaining almost $20 million dollars in funding to build the new War Eagle Career Academy. This facility will support our students’ ability to concentrate on Career and Technical (CTE) programs rather than collegiate programs only. Along with obtaining the funding for the Academy (which did not come from taxpayer dollars), we added four new additional CTE programs (HVAC, Diesel Mechanic, Phlebotomy, and Drone Piloting), as well as starting a fledgling program in Education, further expanding the multiple CTE options available. Our CTE students will be workforce ready, able to go straight into occupations that lead to careers that provide excellent wages and the opportunity for them to be their own bosses.
  • Getting our kids back into the strong educational environment our children loved as soon as possible during the Covid pandemic. It’s been four years so it’s easy to forget, but while a lot of other school districts hesitated and waffled back and forth, we took action and kept our kids’ safety in mind while returning them back into a safe school environment as soon as possible.
    For the next four years I make the same promise to you: I will do my absolute best to ensure we continue to build on what we have achieved and continue our growth to becoming the best we can be. Simple as that. My biggest goal – I would like for the Wakulla School District to be No. 1 in statewide test scores as well as graduation rate. I know that’s a lofty goal, but we are only eight spots away right now, and better funding for teacher retention and recruitment, along with continued community support will be paramount to making that a reality. We have made great strides over the last four years, but we need to continue to find ways we can reduce our costs and increase our effectiveness. There is no silver bullet or miracle cure here; it takes a team effort from a lot of individuals coming together to find the best solutions for the district, its students, teachers, staff, and the taxpayers who support it. In a time where we are seeing many new faces both on the board and at the district level, having a strong, experienced, business-minded board member will be more crucial now than ever.
    For those neighbors I have not had the pleasure to get to know yet, I’d like to take a moment and provide a little background about myself. I believe it’s imperative that you the voter be provided an honest and transparent overview of the person asking you for your vote.
    I am a lifelong resident of Wakulla County and am a proud graduate of Wakulla High School. After graduating from Florida State University, I was blessed to start both a family and a career right here in Wakulla County. I have been married to my wife Ginni Joyner Brown for 17 years and for the last 20 years, Ginni has been a teacher. Together we have a son and a daughter, both of whom attend Wakulla High School and have spent their entire educational journey in the Wakulla County School System. Each morning, the three individuals that encompass my whole world leave our home and head into our schools.
    Ensuring that our educational system is the best it can be is not some corny political slogan for me, rather as a husband and a father with literal skin in the game, it’s personal to me. I have no political agenda, and my loyalty is to the students first. I don’t have to cater to any special interests, and I have no allegiances to anyone other than the students and staff of our school district and citizens of our county. I believe that you can boil down even the most complicated of decisions by asking yourself one simple question: Is this what is best for the students? If so then you can count on me to support that regardless of politics or public opinion.
    As the owner and operator of Waypoint Properties, I get to see daily the positive impacts having a strong school system has on our community. I am proud of the fact that as a local business owner we can reinvest in our community by sponsoring local sports and scholastic teams; supporting multiple local non-profits; and providing career opportunities to dozens of employees. The business acumen and engrained philosophy of helping one’s neighbor, both of which have been reinforced throughout my career, have proven to be valuable assets on your local School Board.
    With a near $60 million budget directed by the School Board, it’s imperative to have business experienced professionals present on the Board. Similarly, during these economically and socially challenging times, having Board members who embody a philosophy of loving their neighbor as themselves is equally as important. I try hard each day to be more Christ-like, selfless, treating people with kindness, respect, and understanding. With me it’s never just business, it’s personal.
    I have volunteered to serve my community in other capacities long before being your school board member, including being a Past President of the Chamber of Commerce, a Board Member of the Panacea Area Water System, a member of the Wakulla County Planning and Zoning board, and the Rec Park Advisory board. My greatest enjoyment though has come from the years I have volunteered coaching youth sports, having coached multiple teams for many, many years. The value all of our local volunteers have in helping mold the leaders of tomorrow cannot ever be adequately accounted for. I have been blessed to play a small role in this development over the years. It brings a smile to my face to hear a former player call me “Coach,” knowing that during our time together they not only learned about the sport being played, but hopefully they also learned about the game of life, and I was blessed to be a small part of that.
    I will close by stating this, if you are looking for an experienced veteran of the School Board, with a parent’s heart, and a business mindset, who is not afraid to make the hard decisions required to ensure that our children have their best opportunities for success, then I respectfully request the honor of serving you a final four years.
    I have been doing my best for our kids the last four years and many years long before that. Judge me based on the person I have always been, not just the politician I have to be now. Please do not hesitate to contact me at (850) 528-6385 anytime to ask questions or discuss ideas you might have for the betterment of our Wakulla Schools. If it’s what is best for the kids, then you can count on me to support it.

Joshua E Brown
Wakulla County School Board District 4 Representative