CCBOE swears in board members, recognizes winner of third-grade writing contest

Published 8:44 pm Thursday, December 15, 2022

By Haley Mitchell Godwin

Incumbent board member Sherri Claybrook and newcomer Sterling Sasser took their respective oaths of office during the regular meeting of the Crenshaw County Board of Education held Monday.

Both Sasser and Claybrook are familiar faces to the community.

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Claybrook, first elected to the board in 2016 to represent District 2, is a Luverne native and is employed by the Luverne Co-op where she works as the bookkeeper.

Sasser, who filled the District 4 seat left open by Charles Tompkins, is a lifelong resident of Brantley. He has served on the Crenshaw County Farmers Federation board for the past five years. While serving in this capacity, Sasser has gained experience working with the Crenshaw County School system outside of his new role as board member. 

Sasser is a 2012 graduate of Troy University where he obtained a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Geomatics Sciences. He and his wife have been married for 12 years and have three children who attend Brantley School.

“With my wife being an educator within the Crenshaw County School System, and my kids attending Brantley,  I was eager to become more involved in the schools and actually be a part of the school system.” Sasser said. 

Sasser’s mother is a retired teacher which adds to his familiarity with the inner workings of education. He hopes to use his knowledge of the education system, familiarity with the community, and parental involvement within the school system, to find new and resourceful methods of improving Crenshaw County Schools. 

“Seeing the passion our local educators have for their jobs and witnessing the love they show to students really had an emotional effect on me over the years and I knew I wanted to do more,” he said. “It is truly an honor to serve and work with others that are passionate about education like my family and I are. My hope and my prayer, throughout this, is to use my seat with the board of education to work closely with our superintendent and with fellow board members to continue the growth and betterment of our school system.”

Superintendent Dodd Hawthorne said he is pleased to have Sasser on the school board and is looking forward to Sasser’s involvement as things move forward.

“As superintendent, I’m excited to welcome Sterling Sasser as a new board member to Crenshaw County Schools,” Hawthorne said. “I look forward to working with him to help move Crenshaw County Schools forward.  We are very fortunate in Crenshaw County to have great school board members that are passionate about education.

The board recognized Jezayia Harris, a third-grader at Luverne School who was the winner of a contest held among all three third-grade classes to write the best personal narrative. 

A Top 5 was chosen from each class and First Citizens Bank chose the winner. Harris wrote a very descriptive piece about a ballgame she played at Highland Home School.

Reroofing projects at the Brantley and Highland Home Ag buildings, and at the central office are very near completion, pending final inspections.  

The board approved a Luverne band out-of-state field trip request. In April, the band will travel to Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida, where they will perform during the Heritage Concert Band Festival.

The results of the school system’s federal/state report card were on the agenda. The federal report card can be viewed at and the state report card is available at

The next regular board meeting is set for Jan. 23, at 5:30 p.m.

The board also thanked Dr. Charles Tompkins for his dedication during the 12 years he served on the board.