Kansas’ Frank Henderson selected for position on path to become NSBA presidentScott Rothschild
By John Heim
KASB Executive Director
Former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm once said, “Those who devote their lives to serving our country, children, and neighborhoods are giving back. They have answered the call to serve.”
There are an estimated 49.5 million public school children in the United States. Kansas is home to approximately 491,000 students. The Seaman School District educates about 4,000 students. North Fairview Elementary School in the Seaman School District enrolls around 300 students. A typical class in North Fairview contains about 25 students.
Like most families in the Seaman School District, Frank and Lorraine Henderson had two children. If you have ever talked with Seaman School Board Member Frank Henderson about his interest in education, you know that he first became interested when Lorraine and he’s two children were born. Frank will tell you that when his kids started at North Fairview Elementary School, he wanted to be involved in their education. He volunteered to help in his children’s classrooms. Frank was now becoming involved in improving the lives of about 40-50 students.
Seeing how interested he was in his own children’s education, other parents suggested Frank serve on the North Fairview Site Council. If you know Frank, you know he is all about service to others, and when asked to serve, he says yes. Now Frank was involved in helping all 300 children at North Fairview Elementary School. Frank’s education service journey was just beginning.
In 2007, there was an opening to serve on the Seaman USD 345 School Board, and Frank decided to run. He was elected and now was in service to the 4,000 students of USD 345. During this time on the board, Frank has served in leadership roles on the board and on various school committees and work groups.
Just two years later, Frank was selected to represent Region 2 on the Kansas Association School Boards Board of Directors. Frank now represented the students of his region, and he did it well. Frank’s only conceivable lapse in judgment came around the same time when he voted to hire a certain Executive Director, a decision that haunts him to this day. Frank served in this role until he stepped down in 2011.
More accurately, he stepped up. Frank left his position as Region 2 Vice President when he was elected KASB President-elect. Frank now stood in service to 490,000 Kansas school children. Again, Frank served well. He was in the leadership chairs at KASB during difficult times in Kansas. Education finance and policy issues were foremost in the public eye, and Frank did well to represent school board members and the children of Kansas.
The next step in Frank’s journey came in 2015 when he was elected to serve as a Western Region Director on the National School Boards Association Board of Directors. The Western Region consists of nine states: Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, North and South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico. Now Frank was in service to the students of those nine states.
The quote “Game recognize game” is credited to Riley Freeman, star of the Boondocks comic strip. On the NSBA Board, game recognized game and because of Frank’s service mentality he was called to serve in leadership positions at the national level. He has served on the executive committee and as chair of the National School Board’s Action Center.
This is starting to sound like a eulogy, so I better get to the point! The NSBA Nominating Committee forwarded Kansas’ own Frank Henderson, born and raised in Sharon Springs, Kansas, as the candidate to be considered for Secretary-Treasurer of the National School Board’s Association. That means Frank will begin the process to become President of NSBA in two years!
Frank Henderson will provide quality leadership to NSBA, in the same way he did at North Fairview Elementary, Seaman USD 345, KASB, and the Western Region — by serving.