My Opinion on Arming Teachers
This was published July 5 in the Charleston Gazette-Mail.
Announcing My Candidacy
My name is Becky Crabtree. I am a teacher, an author, a former coach and a small-scale farmer. I am an active member of Lindside Methodist Church. I am announcing my candidacy for the House of Delegates in the newly drawn 40th District which includes Monroe and parts of Summers County. [Scroll down for the Back Story.]
Here’s why I’m running:
Support public schools: As a long-time teacher with experience in southern WV (Bradshaw, Welch, Bramwell, Oakvale, Peterstown, Greenville, and Ballard), Guam, and Alaska, and currently a teacher at James Monroe High School, I’ve seen first-hand how our public schools unite us and give us a strong sense of community. As your Delegate, I will work hard to maintain public school funding.
Internet connections: Our rural area needs expanded access to high-speed internet for many reasons: to assist students with lessons and research, for adults working from home, communicating with distant family, and even seeing the doctor via telehealth appointments. Solving this problem is a challenge I am willing to undertake.
Protect property rights: As small-scale farmers, my husband and I know the value of hard work. We enjoy raising sheep on our farm near Lindside and growing enough to feed them and us. We have worked hard to maintain a viable farm. Four years ago, a private company aided by eminent domain violated our property rights, had our lush pasture condemned, and, over our objections, ran a pipeline through it. They took valuable pasture from us, and, by their blasting, threaten our water supply. As your Delegate, I will work hard to make sure the property rights of farmers and other land owners cannot be violated to serve the interests of private corporations.
West Virginia is our home: My husband, Roger, and I live at the base of Peters Mountain. We have three daughters, Papi Crabtree, who teaches at Talcott School, Katie Adkins, who teaches language arts at Peterstown Middle School, and Dr. Dinah Jankovic, a pharmacist in a COVID hospital in South Carolina. We have five grandchildren. In our travels and experiences in far-away places, we longed to come home to the beauty of our mountains, the pristine air and water, the changing of seasons, and the hard-working, generous people of our area. There is no place like West Virginia!
My pledge to you: I pledge to listen to the residents of the new District 40 and represent them enthusiastically and with civility. It seems to me that the idea of “A new face for a new district!” is timely. I humbly ask for your support.
I’m seeking your support: My name will be on the ballot this November. In the meantime, please feel free to contact me with your concerns or interest in my campaign. My website, “BeckyCforWV.com,” will provide more information about my values and about events.
Gifts to Bluefield State University
Recently discovered portraits of Othello Maria Harris-Jefferson (1906-1988) and her husband, Phillip G. “Jeff” Jefferson (1902-1986), were presented to Bluefield State University this week. Director of Alumni Affairs, Dr. Deirdre Guyton, accepted the gifts from Becky Crabtree, BSC Class of 1975, and Lacy Watson, former adjunct professor at BSC. The student union at the university is named in honor of Harris-Jefferson, a long-time professor of education at the school. Her husband taught math at Genoa Junior High during the 1960s. The portraits were discovered by Jarrod Hines, owner of Entrusted Auctions, who knew of Crabtree’s affiliation with Bluefield State and contacted her.
Alderson, WV 4th of July Parade 2022
The temperature was 90+ degrees, the parade route wound through three miles of WV homes from historic Victorian houses to trailer parks, all decorated red, white and blue, well-tended flower beds were at the peak of the season, and there were an estimated 15,000 people lining the streets. Not a cross word was heard and smiles ruled the day. It was small town America at its finest!
July 27, Monroe County Democrats Meeting, 7:00, Union
July 27 WV Democrat Candidates Retreat 9-1:00, Charleston
July 26 WV Democrats Fund-raiser, 4:30-6:30, Charleston
July 25, 7:00 Summers County Democrats Meeting, Memorial Building, Hinton
July 23, 6:30-8:30 Summers County FFA Pig Roast
July 12 Bluefield State University Presentation, Hatter Hall at BSU, 10:30
July 8-10 John Henry Days, Talcott, WV
July 10 Monroe County Historical Society, Brynside Fort 2:00
July 9 Second Saturday, Hinton WV
July 4 Alderson Parade
I’m here for you.
Let me know your concerns
Bluefield State College
Honors College Speaker Series
Rebecca “Becky” Crabtree, a Bluefield State College graduate and author, shares her memories honoring past giants at her alma mater and the inspiration they have provided. She draws from her book, “Try and Be Somebody: The Story of Dr. Henry Lake DIckason,” along with the recently published book by William B. Robertson (for whom the BSC Library is named), “Lifting Every Voice.”
Come join us on March 30 at 2pm. Books will be signed and refreshments will be served afterward.
This is event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Here’s the Back Story
My husband, Roger, and I enjoyed the Winter Olympics on TV last month. We marveled at the loveliness of the skaters and the graceful way they glided to the music of their routines. Then, we scooted up to the edge of our recliners to watch the athletes on skis and snowboards. My breath caught a time or two when they sailed up high in the air, spun and turned flips and landed upright, sometimes even doing it all backwards. It was something to see. We talked about how hard the athletes must have practiced and how proud their parents must be and how wonderfully they each represented their county. It seemed so pure and admirable. I told Roger that I’d like to do something grand like that and he kinda choked, laughing but he pretended that he was nodding his head in agreement.
The very next night, the WVVA evening news came on and reported about some proposal or another coming out of the Charleston state house. Once I figured it out, I wondered why it was important to those folks. I shook my head and got up to turn the TV off.
“Wait a minute,” he said, “You want to do something grand? Go to Charleston and tell them what regular people want.”
“It’d be hard for a Democrat to get elected this year,” I thought out loud.
He said, “Well, maybe a Washington DC Democrat couldn’t, but maybe… a Peters Mountain, Monroe County Democrat could.” He added, “There’s only one other candidate running; that doesn’t seem like much fun for the voters.” He shook out his newspaper to read but winked around the open pages.
The Thought Grows
“Oh, you…” I swiped at him with my dish towel and told him to hush. But I thought about it. A lot. Hard to say if one person in the Legislature could make a difference, but there were 15 year-olds at the Olympics that made a difference, representing their people and their country. Roger might have something there. I’ve taught school for decades, worked side jobs, coached basketball, wrote books, and done a little farming. I know about getting things done.
I took the idea to the altar that Sunday, listened, and found peace. Our daughters and grandchildren didn’t know what I was thinking as I knelt at the altar. Turns out that they whispered questions as they sat in our pew wondering why I went forward. Did mom have cancer? Was she changing jobs? Later, they were so relieved that I wasn’t dying that they didn’t mind a bit that I was venturing into politics. Of course, they don’t know about my only political experience as they weren’t born when I won the presidency of my fifth grade using the theme, “By Hecky, Vote for Becky.” At nine years old, it made me giggle because I thought it was a little bit off-color, close to swearing. I think I still have those construction paper posters; maybe I can dig them out.
Roger and I live at the base of Peters Mountain near Lindside. We have three daughters and five grandchildren (all brilliant and beautiful and full of vim and vinegar). Our oldest daughter, Papi Crabtree, teaches preschool at Talcott School and our middle daughter, Katie Adkins, teaches language arts to Peterstown’s fifth graders. Both teachers have earned recognition during their careers. Our youngest, Dr. Dinah Jankovic, is a pharmacist at a COVID hospital in South Carolina.
I am used to winning, having played on winning basketball teams at Princeton High School and Bluefield State College and on champion travel softball teams in WV and VA. I coached, too, basketball and softball and track and volleyball. A highlight of my basketball coaching was in 2006, when the Barrow Lady Whalers (located on the northern coast of Alaska)and I made it to the finals of the Alaska AAA State Tournament. That team was a group of young women, Inupiat (Northern Eskimo), Samoan, Yup’ik (Central Alaskan native group) and Filipino players that I had the privilege of coaching from their 6th grade to their 12th. I coached at Peterstown, too, and both dreaded and admired the Summers County Lady Bobcats and their “Permanent Press.” We beat them at the middle school level a couple of years but that orange girls basketball machine was ever disciplined and skilled. I am a huge fan of the fast-paced game of basketball no matter who is playing and use “queenofthegym” as part of my personal email address. I guess I am a winning author, too, come to think of it, three of my six published books earned awards.
My interests are varied and my beliefs are strong. I support local control of most everything, including school boards, health centers, and counties. I intend to see that our district gets its fair share of State and Federal funding for schools, roads, bridges, water and sewer, and also see that broadband is expanded to all parts of District 40. I will oppose anything that takes funds away from our public schools. I believe in fair taxation, clean air and water, the rights of property owners, America’s free enterprise system, and I support the respect and the benefits American veterans deserve. My brother served in Vietnam and I had four uncles who served in WWII, two in the Pacific, one was at Normandy on D-Day, and one flew a B-17 at age 19. My family and I value the sacrifices of our military personnel.
After living on Guam and on the North Slope of Alaska, we were sure glad to get back to our little farm in beautiful Monroe County. Nowhere outside this area is the water as pure, the air as fresh, the changing seasons more beautiful, and the people as hard-working and giving. I feel our lifestyle here is worth defending. Do you remember a couple of years ago when a grandma got arrested as she sat in her first car, a ’71 Pinto, across the open trench of the Mountain Valley Pipeline on her own family’s land? That was me. I think I have the courage to continue to stand up for what I believe in.
Get in Touch
My name will be on the ballot this November. In the meantime, please feel free to contact me with your concerns or interest in my campaign. Later this spring, my website, “BeckyCforWV,” will provide more information about my values and about events.
I pledge to listen to the residents of the new District 40 and represent them enthusiastically and with civility. I humbly ask for your support.