Journal Gazette and Times-Courier
Mattoon and Charleston
SPRINGFIELD — State Rep. Roger Eddy, R-Hutsonville, has suspended his re-election campaign to consider a job offer with the Illinois Association of School Boards, he told the JG-TC on Sunday evening.
In the midst of a heated primary race, Eddy has been offered the position of executive director of the IASB. If he accepts the job, he would start July 1.
“I have an offer on the table,” he told the JG-TC Sunday night.
Eddy said that if he does sign a contract with the association, he will resign both his current state representative seat for the 109th District and his post as superintendent of the Hutsonville school district.
He told the JG-TC on Sunday evening that these questions, however, remain premature.
“I haven’t even seen the contract yet,” Eddy said about 8:30 p.m. Sunday.
He released the following statement late Sunday:
“I have devoted my entire professional life to working to improve the education of our children. From serving as a teacher, my work as a superintendent, and now as a state representative, I’ve committed myself to working to improve Illinois’ education system.
“Now, a unique opportunity has been presented to me that would further my reach to improve our state education system while representing one of the state’s most influential and respected education associations, the Illinois Association of School Boards,” Eddy said.
“The IASB has asked me to serve as their new executive director beginning on July 1. While final details regarding the position have not been resolved, I do expect them to finalize soon, and as a result I am suspending my champaign for state representative effective immediately,” he said.
“While I regret the timing of this announcement and I know many who have worked so hard for my re-election will be disappointed, the decision to move forward with this opportunity is the right one and I am excited about the challenges that lie ahead,” he added.
Eddy said he does not want to mislead voters over the next few days, and that desire led him to suspend his campaign while he mulls the offer from the IASB.
Sunday afternoon, IASB spokesman Jim Russell confirmed that the organization’s board of directors voted during its meeting Saturday in Chicago to offer Eddy the executive director position.
If Eddy accepts the job offer, Russell said he would start working in this position on July 1 after the association’s current executive director retires.
Recent redistricting put Eddy out of the 109th District and into the new 110th District in the Illinois House.
Eddy has been running for re-election in a heated primary race against Republican challengers Brad Halbrook of Shelbyville, who is chairman of the Shelby County Republican Party, and Kevin L. Garner of Toledo. The trio are vying for the GOP nomination for the newly drawn 110th House district, which includes all or parts of Coles, Cumberland, Clark, Edgar, Crawford and Lawrence counties.
Eddy has served in the House since 2003.
According to the IASB website, the group “is a voluntary organization of local boards of education dedicated to strengthening the public schools through local citizen control. Although not a part of state government, IASB is organized by member school boards as a private not-for-profit corporation under authority granted by Article 23 of The Illinois School Code.”
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