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S.C. Education Superintendent Candidate Debate Set for Oct. 14 Delayed

Quick Facts

 The debate was originally scheduled for the Richardson Ballroom in the DiGiorgio Campus Center.
 The education superintendent candidates are: Republican candidate Molly Spearman; Democratic candidate Tom Thompson and American Party candidate Ed Murray.

Molly Spearman
Tom Thompson
Ed Murray

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA - Winthrop University hoped to host the three candidates for S.C. Superintendent of Education for a Tuesday, Oct. 14 debate but that has now been delayed.

The candidates are: Republican candidate Molly Spearman; Democratic candidate Tom Thompson and American Party candidate Ed Murray. The debate will be held at 7 p.m. in the Richardson Ballroom in the DiGiorgio Campus Center.

Spearman asked for the delay due to the death of a family member. A later date will be announced.

The education superintendent holds a very important position in South Carolina, Winthrop officials said. “Nothing is more important than the education of our children,” said Jeff Perez, senior counsel to the president for public affairs. “The Superintendent of Education guides educational policy in South Carolina, so this is a great opportunity for the public to come to campus and learn more about where the candidates stand on the issues.”

The winner will replace Mick Zais, who chose not to seek re-election.

About the candidates:

Molly Spearman is a former educator, former legislator and for the past nine years, the leader of the S.C. Association of School administrators. She majored in music education at Lander College (now Lander University) and was elected student body president. She earned a Master of Education Supervision from George Washington University and an Education Specialist degree from the University of South Carolina.

Tom Thompson began his professional career as a high school mathematics teacher in a Chicago inner-city community close to his old neighborhood. From teaching he soon moved to educational administration and worked in several levels of the educational hierarchy – K-12, state agency and higher education. He holds three degrees from the University of Illinois, Champaign, Illinois – a Ph.D. in educational administration, a master’s degree in mathematics and a bachelor’s degree in the teaching of mathematics.

Ed Murray has more than 25 years of experience in academics as a teacher and administrator, and served in the U.S. Navy’s nuclear power program. Murray earned his Bachelor of Arts in history from California State University, Sacramento, a master’s degree in cross-cultural teaching from National University, and a second master’s in educational leadership and policy studies from the University of Texas at Arlington. He currently serves as an administrator at North Middle/High School in North, South Carolina.

For more information, contact Katarina D. Moyon, co-director of the John C. West Forum on Politics and Policy which is the sponsor of the event, at 803/323-4663 or

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