With the new year underway, the Forsyth County Board of Education has welcomed its newly elected member, District 5 representative Lindsey Adams, who is taking over the seat recently vacated by longtime member and chair Nancy Roche.
A former educator and mother to four Forsyth County Schools students, Adams was sworn in to her new position on the board after its last meeting in December, taking a moment to thank her family, the other board members and Superintendent Dr. Jeff Bearden for their continued support.
Adams was elected into the position after facing her only opposition, Bibi Lopez, in the primary election in June. After 100% of the votes were accounted for, Adams led ahead of Lopez with 84% (4,936) of the votes while Lopez earned nearly 16% (917).
Forsyth County Board of Education Member for District 5
Phone: (470) 695-0009
With her mom being a lifelong teacher, Adams said that education has always been a huge part of her life, which has also led her to get involved in the community and with nonprofit organizations.
She ended up attending Boston College, earning degrees in English and Education with Moderate Special Needs while also taking the time to volunteer and participate in service work with children. Adams has since worked extensively with nonprofits such as Special Olympics Georgia, The Center for Child Wellbeing at the Task Force for Child Survival and Development, and Love Not Lost.
Eventually moving back into education, Adams later taught sixth grade as a co-teacher at Shamrock Middle School in Dekalb County. She taught math and science along with a study skills class for students with special needs.
More recently, Adams has worked from home for nearly 10 years as a small group insurance specialist for businesses under 100 employees.
She and her family continued to involve themselves in the community, though, as she served as a member of the Forsyth County Schools Superintendent’s Parent and Community Advisory, the Local School Council at Haw Creek Elementary where her kids are students and the Total Wellness Collaborative.
Although she was heavily involved in the community, Adams said that she did not understand much about the world of local politics until her husband, Chandon, ran for a seat on the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners back in 2016. Having gone through that experience, when she heard that a seat on the Board of Education would be opening up, she felt up to the task.
“When I learned that Nancy was retiring, I felt a calling in my heart,” Adams said. “It felt like …. this was the perfect time for [me] to step up.”
Even before being elected, Adams started to think of what her purpose would be as a former educator and new member of the county’s school board. In the end, she said that every decision she helps to make on the board will be with the district’s students in mind.
“When something comes at me, I need to ask the question: Is this in the best interest of the students?” Adams said. “That’s what it comes down to.”
As she prepares for her first days on the board, heading off to Dahlonega for the board’s annual retreat on Jan. 4-5, Adams wants to learn as much as she can about Forsyth County Schools and those that she represents while serving on the board.
In the long-term, Adams plans to focus her priorities on student safety, health and wellbeing within the district.
She plans to learn more about ongoing student safety assessments, and especially with the pandemic, she wants to make sure school and district leaders are “staying diligent” and looking out for students’ mental and physical health.
Adams also wants to work to further connect students to communities within their schools, giving them an outlet and sense of belonging at school that each and every student can turn to when they may really need it.
“That community and that feeling of being part of something is big — we need to do a better job of doing that [in school],” Adams said. “I think churches do that really well and maybe athletic groups and things like that, but with school in general, I think we can do a better job of doing that. Humans were made for a connection, so if we can somehow create a way where our schools can foster communities of connection for every student, I think that would be truly amazing.”
Adams mentioned that when students are struggling with their mental health or even when they may just be feeling lonely, which many have felt during the pandemic over the past year, it is important to have those “communities of connection” so that they can have someone at school that they feel comfortable speaking with and reaching out to.
“There has to be some way that we can build a community of connection other than just going in, learning and then leaving,” Adams said. “There has to be more to develop the whole self. School should be a whole-self model, not just a knowledge.”
Going forward, Adams said she is excited to get started on the board, working with the other members and with other elected officials to further help the county’s students and connect the community further with its schools.
For those who have any questions or would like to get in touch with Adams, they can email her at Liadams@forsyth.k12.ga.us or call her at (470) 695-0009.
“[I aim to be] someone who can support the needs of the community,” Adams said.