President Andrew McLaurin
Leading the Ferndale School Board -- President Andrew McLaurin
Published January 25, 2021
Andrew McLaurin’s first volunteer job on behalf of the Ferndale School District was working with a citizens’ group to pass a capital projects bond in 2006. In 2008, when longtime School Board member Norm Robertson decided to retire in the middle of his term, Andrew was approached about applying to fill the empty seat. “As the father of five children being educated in Ferndale schools,” he says, “I thought it would be a way to give back
Andrew goes on to explain how his five children came to be part of the Ferndale School District. “When my family moved here from North Carolina on New Year's Eve 2001, our children were transferring from a private Christian school. My wife and I first enrolled them in a similar school in Whatcom County, but we weren’t impressed with the quality of education. We learned more about Ferndale public schools in the spring, and we decided to transfer our kids in the fall. It was the best decision we made for our children.”
Andrew was sworn onto the School Board in November 2008. “At my first meeting,” he recalls, “former superintendent, Dr. Roger Lehnert, announced his retirement. That meant my initiation to being a School Board member was consumed with the selection of a new superintendent, a process that was compounded by the sudden death of Dr. Lehnert in May of 2009. I served for a year, but did not retain the seat in the November 2009 election. However, when the position became open again in 2011, I was reappointed, and I have served on the board ever since.”
By profession, Andrew is a health care administrator, currently retired (somewhat). His last six years, he worked for Overlake Medical Center in Bellevue as Director of Cardiology and Cardiothoracic Surgery. “A little over a year ago, I retired, got my contractor's license, and started my own business,” he shares. “Less than two months after I retired, I was contacted by a local cardiologist who asked me to assist with his practice. I now work part-time for him and part-time in my handyman business. I am failing at retirement!”
Andrew’s five children are now grown and living in Washington. He and his wife of 32 years, Jenny, enjoy hiking and spending time outdoors. They also enjoy completing projects in their historic Ferndale home (the Malloy House), which was built in 1898. They are active members of St. James Presbyterian Church -- “or as active as we can be during a global pandemic,” quips Andrew.
Andrew deeply appreciates the dedication and commitment of the teachers, staff, and administration of the Ferndale School District. “I always felt my children received quality education coupled with personal interest. Also,” he adds, “I have been impressed with the breadth of offerings we have managed to maintain for all kids.”
Andrew began his service in the Ferndale School District working to get the 2006 bond passed. Currently, he is the board member liaison to the Bond Oversight Committee, which is charged with monitoring the implementation of the 2019 bond. When asked about the future, he says he hopes “our community will continue to support the district as we head into a time when we need to rebuild more aging schools. And I hope our district will continue to be a source of community pride.”
Thank you, School Board Member Andrew McLaurin! We appreciate you!