The Amarillo Pioneer

Amarillo's only free online newspaper. Established in 2016, we work to bring you local news that is unbiased and honest.


Former Amarillo Mayor, Former Trustee Headline AISD Candidate Filings

Fourteen candidates have applied to be considered to replace Trustees John Ben Blanchard and Renee McCown on the Amarillo ISD Board of Trustees following their recent resignations.

According to a list provided by Amarillo ISD, the list of the fourteen candidates includes some names well-known to local voters and political observers, as well as some newcomers to the scene. Former Amarillo Mayor Debra McCartt and former AISD Trustee John Betancourt are among the most well-known names on the list, which also includes the likes of WTAMU educator Claudia Stuart, former Potter District Clerk candidate Crystal Flores, and non-profit director Matthew Hite.

As voters may recall, McCartt previously served on the Amarillo City Commission and as Amarillo Mayor before retiring in 2011. McCartt also unsuccessfully ran for the Potter County Judge position in the 2014 Republican primary, finishing behind Nancy Tanner and Bill Bandy in a five-candidate race.

Betancourt is also well-known to AISD school board observers, having previously served from 2015 until 2019. Betancourt, a business consultant, was ousted by voters in the May 4th school board elections, as local voters filled three seats on the board with newcomers.

The fourteen contenders filed for consideration ahead of the July 3rd deadline, and their applications will now await consideration by the AISD Board of Trustees. This will also mark the second such appointment process in a year, as the board selected attorney Robin R. Malone to replace James Allen on the board following his resignation in mid-2018.

The full list of candidates is below:

  • Johnny Joe Betancourt

  • Crystal Marie Flores

  • Angela Christine Hartfelder

  • Matthew Walter Hite

  • Debra Ann McCartt

  • Kayla Deanne Mendez

  • David Nathan Nance

  • Lauren Colleen Nevarez

  • Miriam Teresa Pacheco

  • Bradley B. Phillips

  • Donny Mark Prickett

  • Alberto Rios

  • Claudia Dianne Stuart

  • Henry Alvin Wyckoff

Photo by AISD

Photo by AISD

Publication Note for Thursday and Friday

Bell Files With FEC to Run in Texas Senate Race