Board Members

Board Members

RCA Board 2016

President – Lavina Grandon.  A retired teacher with 32 years of experience in rural schools, Lavina Grandon led the opposition to Governor Mike Huckabee’s effort in 2003 to consolidate all schools in Arkansas with under 1500 enrollment.  She lives in north central Arkansas where she coordinates a food pantry and helped form a school foundation. She serves on the board of Southern Echo and Rural Schools Collaborative.  Grandon is the founder of Rural Community Alliance and has been a board member since 2005.

Treasurer – Kerry Cunningham.  Kerry Cunningham is a retired teacher, principal, and program coordinator of a rural school district  in the Ouachita Mountains of west central Arkansas. She helps organize chapters in central and west central Arkansas. She has been a board member since 2005


Vice-President – Erma Brown of Stephens is retired from Ouachita County Administrator for Arkansas Department of Human Services. She holds a MS degree in Counseling. Currently she is the Region 13 School District Representative of the Arkansas School Boards Association and former member of the Stephens School Board. She has served on the Arkansas Child Abuse Prevention Board, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, as board member for the Camden Chamber of Commerce, and as president of the Women’s Crisis Center. Brown Erma Brownjoined the board in 2009.

Mattie Allison of Marianna is a lifetime educator with years of experience ranging from classroom instruction to tutoring, to proctoring. She was the first female councilman for Marianna and served for ten years. She currently is a grant writing consultant. Mattie holds a BSE from UAPB and MSE from UALR,

Secretary – Andrew Taylor. “Coach” Taylor is a retired teacher and coach and currently operates a construction company in Eudora, Arkansas. He has been actively advocating for rural schools since 2005 and has been an integral part of the Eudora Community Revitalization Project. Coach Taylor’s board term began in July 2010.

Advisory Board Member – Candy Webb is a resident of Paron where she serves as chapter leader. Her volunteer service as 4-H advisor has resulted in a model youth group in Saline County. She and a small team of volunteers oversee the former Paron School campus and provide programming for the community. She currently spends half of her day volunteering in the Paron Head Start meal program.

Youth Advisory Board Member – Lily Webb of Paron is a sophomore at Perryville High School. Her leadership skills have been developed and honed through the 4-H program. Her focus area is agriculture.  Recent projects include construction of a greenhouse that provides food for the Head Start program as well as community members.