28 Apr Michelee “Shelly” Crawford
Michelee “Shelly” Crawford
Board of Regents, District 8
Campaign Contact Phone: 702-235-3745
Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.
As a first generation high school and college graduate, I learned that talents are equally dispersed but opportunities are not. I had to lean on others to navigate my college career with many barriers to becoming a principal and Air Force officer. I have used my trials to create pathways for my students and my community. Within my work, I have created state and federal legislation to support college and career access. Within Nevada we are doing incredible work within silos of isolated efforts and I have experience bringing Nevada Systems of Higher Education (NSHE) together to combine efforts to have a broader impact. My district represents rural NSHE institutions that need a focused and loud voice to advocate for college and career institutional expansion. I will always get the work done with the highest level of results using integrity free of fear and full of grace.
What do you believe is the number one issue that Nevada’s System of Higher Education is facing?
Right now we are facing funding issues brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. There is an estimated $70 million dollars of funding owed by the state of Nevada. Without that funding, our programs dwindle and cease to exist. I will leverage expertise and relationships to regain that funding so that we invest in the future of Nevada.
What is your position on removing the Board of Regents from the Nevada Constitution? Do you support or oppose this and please explain why?
I support removing the Board of Regents from the constitution. A balance of power and accountability will ensure the Board is held accountable.
Should Nevadans have more power to hold the Board of Regents accountable? Do you support more transparency and accountability for the public to have over the Board of Regents?
Absolutely, I have spoken to those for and against holding Regents accountable. Every decision I make is informed by listening to both sides. I came to this decision because those that support state thar transparency is needed and those against support less accountable measures. Transparency is a pillar I use in my daily life as a wife, mother, principal, and service member.
How will you decrease government waste and public corruption by the Board of Regents?
Employee and student-driven decision making is the center of my work. When we include those most effected in the decision making process, we decrease waste. I will read over materials presented to the board with a fine tooth comb and ask questions to get to the root of public spending. I will involve stakeholders including all levels of students, staff, and community members in the use of spending.
Please describe the role of the Board of Regents.
One of my favorite things to do is redefine roles for the greatest impact because my constituents and my time is very valuable. The Board of Regents sets policies and oversees spending. I want to leverage this role to create opportunities within budgets and policy making. I plan to ask the community what their hopes and dreams are for the NSHE community and what barriers exist and get to work. I have a track record of making big positive changes within small spaces as a principal with 100% staffing, zero behavior referrals, the highest level of growth within an inner city school and as a Guard member that was awarded a commendation medal for leadership. I always go above and beyond. As I talk to the public, many people do not know what a Regent does. I plan to inform and work with the public to do more for NSHE institutions by redefining my role for the greatest impact.
NSHE has had 6 chancellors in 6 years. Do you support the current Chancellor’s contract so that there is consistent leadership over Nevada’s higher education system?
As a principal within CCSD, we have also had a high turnover of superintendents. I have experience making a great impact on student achievement, enrollment, retention and recruitment with all my superintendents. As a military service member, we are trained in followership. Followership is often overlooked but it is a valuable resource in getting the work done. I believe in our current chancellor’s effort and will work diligently to support her initiatives because when we drill down, we all want our students and staff to learn and expand.
How would you continue the Board of Regents’ study of discrimination and implementation of diversity and inclusion trainings to deter sexual harassment and discrimination?
I overseee diversity, equity, and inclusion for the Nevada National Guard. I am on the multicultural committee for the state. I wrote senate bill 352 which created diversity pathways for future teachers. My doctorate is in organizational leadership and policy with an action research project on diversity, equity, and inclusion. I created the first ever state of Nevada military training on equity for women. I investigate sexual harassment polices to create recommendations and training for the state. I will use all my resources and experience to extinguish discrimination of diverse students and staff with trainings and policy change.
Should separate funding formulas be created for the non-university institutions?
Anytime finding can be used to create equality, I support that. Schools in rural communities have lower enrollment but have a greater need because their are opportunity gaps that exist.
Should non-universities have their own governing boards?
Every institution deserves a seat at the board room table. My concern with separating universities from community colleges is that community colleges will have less access to resources. I attended Community College of Southern Nevada back when CSN was CCSN.I attended because I did not have money to take the SAT or ACT to enter a university directly. My worry is when community colleges expand to become four year intuitions, how will that jump happen with different governing boards? For the purpose of universities understanding underserved populations and creating access, I do not believe non-universities should have their own hovering boards. Instead, I suggest we leverage community colleges to create pathways of opportunities.
What are your plans to remedy the regional disparity in lab and research space that hinders UNLV from fulfilling its research mission?
Community College of Southern Nevada- AA Psychology; Sierra Nevada College- BA Teaching English as a Second Language; University of Nevada Las Vegas- MA Curriculum and Instruction; University of Phoenix- Literacy certificate; Georgetown University- Public Policy certificate; Current William Howard Taft University- Ed.D Leadership and Education Administration candidate
How would you improve workforce development programs at the state and community colleges?
When I intended to UNLV in 2002, I was part of a research lab for cognition and aging. I saw firsthand the lack of funding for lab and research space. My remedies would include enrolling those that benefit from lab and research graduates to support initiatives and to fund the spaces. Additionally, I plan to shine a spotlight on these issues with local media. We can remedy this issue UNLV was recently named a top research institution and create upward momentum by explaining the impact at the local, star, and federal level.
Do you think that GBC should be elevated to a full four-year institution (NSHE considers it a two-year institution even though it grants 14 different BA or BS degrees)?
I would ensure accountability and responsiveness by having students, adjunct staff, and tenured staff roundtables to identify disparities in accountability. I have held question and answer systems and I have heard that their is a need for a local of voice from those that hold less power than system-level personnel. As a building principal, I also have these issues. I hold quarterly support staff breakfast celebrations to identify need in a safe forum. As a result, I have created pathways for those that are underserved. I plan to do the same as your Board of Regent.
How would you “right-size” system-level administration and ensure greater accountability and responsiveness of system-level personnel?
I currently work with the Workforce Development Office to create pathways for teacher recruitment. I worked on Covid relief funds for the 2022 Federal Recovery Act. I have direct access to federal policymakers. I spoke on congress for the importance to access to affordable and free college. I conduct weekly state trainings on public service loan forgiveness. I plan to improve work force development programs at the state and community colleges, by continuing the above work by identifying and advocating for these resources.