Hanifah Kambon

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Hanifah Kambon
Hanifah Kambon.jpg
Columbus Board of Education, At-large
Former member
Term ends
November 2013
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
First electedNovember 3, 2009
Term limitsN/A
Bachelor'sOhio State University
Master'sUniversity of Dayton
ProfessionEducational trainer
Office website
Campaign website
Hanifah Kambon campaign logo
Hanifah Kambon was an at-large member of the Columbus Board of Education. She was first elected to the board in 2009 and lost her re-election bid on November 5, 2013.


Kambon earned a B.A. in English Education from Ohio State University and a M.Ed. in High School Guidance Counseling from the University of Dayton. She is an educational trainer who has worked with Columbus City Schools and Head Start. Kambon and her husband, Ako, have three adult children.[1][2]



See also: Columbus City Schools elections (2013)

Kambon sought a second term on the board but lost her re-election bid on November 5, 2013.


Columbus Board of Education, At-large, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMichael D. Cole 23.5% 32,756
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRamona R. Reyes Incumbent 18.6% 26,016
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngDominic Paretti 16% 22,380
     Nonpartisan Mike Wiles Incumbent 14.9% 20,791
     Nonpartisan Beverly J. Corner 14% 19,586
     Nonpartisan Hanifah Kambon Incumbent 12.9% 17,986
Total Votes 139,515
Source: Franklin County Board of Elections, "November 2013 General Election Official Results," accessed December 13, 2013


Kambon was first elected to the board on November 3, 2009, placing second in the race for four available seats.

Columbus Board of Education, At-large, November 3, 2009
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngRamona R. Reyes 32.9% 43,411
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngHanifa Kambon 30.7% 40,417
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngMike Wiles 29.1% 38,385
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngWrite-in votes 7.3% 9,557
Total Votes 131,770
Source: Franklin County Board of Elections

What was at stake?

Incumbents Kambon, Ramona R. Reyes and Mike Wiles ran for re-election to the board in 2013. They competed with challengers Michael D. Cole, Beverly J. Corner and Dominic Paretti in the November 5, 2013 general election.

Ethics violations

On October 25th, 2013, Kambon was reprimanded by the Ohio Ethics Commission for conflict-of-interest charges dating back to 2011. She agreed to repay the district $11,750 related to four contracts held by her husband's firm, Visionary Leaders Institute. The district established contracts with the firm in 2010 to supply training materials and workshops to staff members. Kambon was not found to have knowingly broken ethics rules though she received payments of $1,085 from the firm while the contracts were valid.[3]

Issue 50

A major issue in the school board campaign was the property tax changes embodied in Issue 50. This proposed tax levy would add $0.90 per $100 of assessed property value to support renovation and maintenance in the district. A portion of this tax levy totaling about $8.5 million per year would be earmarked for charter schools with high performance indicators. Mayor Michael B. Coleman and other community leaders held a rally on September 9th to support the levy while no board members spoke during the event.[4] Voters rejected the tax levy with a 69% majority.[5]

"Scrubbing" investigation

The district also faces an ongoing investigation by the Ohio State Auditor regarding attendance practices during the 2010-2011 school year. An investigation by state officials as well as the FBI looked into the practice of "scrubbing" or removing students with frequent absences from school to skew test scores. The state investigation is currently looking into allegations of grade adjustments and other practices by district employees with subpoenas issued in July 2013. The district could lose state funding related to student performance in the 2010-2011 school year if the investigation reveals grade and attendance manipulation.[6] On October 22, the board unanimously voted to create new attendance policies that would require court hearings and district investigations into student whereabouts before removal from attendance records.[7]

About the district

See also: Columbus City Schools, Ohio
Columbus City Schools is located in Franklin County, Ohio
Columbus is the county seat of Franklin County and located in central Ohio. The city's population was 787,033 according to the 2010 U.S. Census.[8]


Columbus lags behind the rest of Ohio in terms of median income and poverty rate while outpacing the state in higher education attainment. The 2010 U.S. Census found that 32.3% of Columbus residents over 25 years old held undergraduate degrees compared to a 24.5% rate for the state of Ohio. Columbus had a median income of $43,348 in 2010 compared to $48,071 for Ohio. The poverty rate for Columbus was 21.8% in 2010 compared to an 14.8% rate for the rest of the state.[8]

Racial Demographics, 2012[8]
Race Columbus(%) Ohio (%)
White 61.5 82.7
Black or African American 28 12.2
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.3 0.2
Asian 4.1 1.7
Two or More Races 3.3 2.1
Hispanic or Latino 5.6 3.1

Presidential Voting Pattern[9]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 60.5 37.8
2008 59.6 38.9
2004 54.3 45
2000 48.8 47.8

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages, although rounding by the Census Bureau may make the total one or two tenths off from being exactly 100 percent.[10]

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