School Board Members Lead Statewide Task Forces

School Board Members Lead Statewide Task Forces
SB members join state task force

Tampa, FL – June 7, 2024 – The Citrus County School District is proud to announce that two of its own School Board Members, Joseph "Joe" Faherty and Thomas Kennedy, have been appointed to lead crucial statewide task forces for the Florida School Board Association (FSBA). This recognition highlights the exceptional leadership and expertise within the Citrus County school system.

Leading the Way in School Safety and Security

At the recent FSBA/FADSS Annual Joint Conference General Session meeting, Joe Faherty was appointed Chair of the newly formed School Safety & Security Task Force. This appointment leverages Mr. Faherty's extensive experience in law enforcement, specifically his nearly 24 years as a sheriff's deputy, with 22 years dedicated as a School Resource Officer (SRO), and 5 years with the Department of Juvenile Justice. Mr. Faherty received a degree in Behavioral Science/Criminal Justice and a Master's degree in Business and Organizational Security Management. His commitment to student safety is further evidenced by his 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Florida Association of School Resource Officers. Mr. Faherty's expertise in integrating School Guardians into Citrus County Schools further strengthens his leadership on this critical task force. He will be co-chairing the committee with fellow law enforcement officer and Union County School Board Member, Russell Gordon.

Embracing Innovation with Generative AI and Large Language Models

President Bryant of the FSBA at thee same event also announced the formation of a Gen AI/LLM in Education Task Force, focusing on the emerging opportunities that Generative Artificial Intelligence and Large Language Models offer school districts. Recognizing Thomas Kennedy's leadership in this area, President Bryant appointed him as Chair of this groundbreaking task force. Mr. Kennedy's work during his 2022-2023 term as FSBA President established him as a thought leader in understanding how GenAI/LLM can benefit students, staff, and overall school operations. His expertise encompasses strategic planning, policy development, and logistical needs, including transportation optimization.

Citrus County School Board Superintendent's Statement

"We are incredibly proud of Joe Faherty and Thomas Kennedy for their appointments to these vital leadership positions within the FSBA," said Sandra “Sam” Himmel, Superintendent of Citrus County Schools and former President of the Florida Association of District School Superintendents. "Their dedication to student safety and embracing innovative solutions like GenAI/LLM reflects the commitment to excellence that defines our school district. We have no doubt that they will make significant contributions to these task forces, shaping the future of education for all of Florida."