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Kathy Gillespie

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Kathy Gillespie
Kathy Gillespie.JPG
Vancouver Board of Directors, Position 3
Term ends
November 2017
Years in position 6
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 5, 2013
First electedNovember 3, 2009
Term limitsN/A
Office website
Ballotpedia's school board candidate survey
Kathy Gillespie currently represents Position 3 on the Vancouver Board of Directors in Washington. She first won election to the board in 2009. Gillespie defeated challenger Lisa Phifer Ross in the November 5, 2013 general election.


Gillespie worked for 13 years as a journalist and editor covering education issues in the region. She and her partner, Debbie Epstein, have two children attending district schools.[1]



See also: Vancouver School District elections (2013)


Gillespie won a second term against challenger Lisa Phifer Ross in the November 5, 2013 general election.


Vancouver Board of Directors, Position 3, Four-year term, 2013
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngKathy Gillespie Incumbent 53% 11,974
     Nonpartisan Lisa Phifer Ross 47% 10,622
Total Votes 22,596
Source: Clark County Auditor's Office, "November 5, 2013 General Election," November 26, 2013


Gillespie reported no contributions or expenditures to the Washington Public Disclosure Commission.[2]


The Columbian endorsed Gillespie on October 16, 2013.[3]


Gillespie won election to the board by defeating Nelson Holmberg on November 3, 2009.

Vancouver Board of Directors, Position 3, November 3, 2009
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngKathy Gillespie 60.2% 14,795
     Nonpartisan Nelson Holmberg 39.3% 9,668
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 0.5% 128
Total Votes 24,591
Source: Clark County Auditor's Office

Campaign themes


Gillespie provided the following statement for the 2013 Local Voters' Pamphlet in Clark County:[4]

"It is a privilege to serve this community and Vancouver Public Schools as a Board director. I have two children in our schools and am a long-time volunteer. I believe all students can become engaged, life-long learners. My job is to provide the oversight, strategic planning and necessary funding to ensure all students acquire the skills needed for success in career, college and life. I closely monitor progress relative to our strategic goals through system-wide data analysis and am proud that graduation and student achievement rates have risen. With your vote, I will continue to advocate for all students."

Note: The above quote is from the candidate's website, which may include some typographical or spelling errors.

What was at stake?

Incumbent Mark Stoker won re-election to the Position 2 seat without opposition. Gillespie ran successfully for a second term on the board against challenger Lisa Phifer Ross.

About the district

See also: Vancouver Public Schools, Washington
Vancouver Public Schools is located in Clark County, Washington
Vancouver is the county seat of Clark County, which is situated along the Columbia River in southwestern Washington. Vancouver's population was 161,791 according to the 2010 U.S. Census.[5]


Vancouver lags behind the rest of Washington based on median income, poverty levels and higher education achievement. The 2010 U.S. Census found the median income in Vancouver was $50,387 while the state median income was $58,890. The city's poverty rate was 15.5% compared to the state's 12.5% poverty rate. The percentage of city residents over 25 years old with undergraduate degrees (23.5%) was lower than the state average (31.4%).[5]

Racial Demographics, 2012[5]
Race Vancouver (%) Washington (%)
White 80.9 77.3
Black or African American 2.9 3.6
American Indian and Alaska Native 1.0 1.5
Asian 5.0 7.2
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 1.0 0.6
Two or More Races 4.8 4.7
Hispanic or Latino 10.4 11.2

Presidential Voting Pattern[6]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 57.1 42.1
2008 51.9 46.8
2004 46.7 52.0
2000 45.6 49.6

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin rather than a race. Citizens may report both their race and their place of origin, and as a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table may exceed 100 percent.[7][8]

Recent news

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