April 5, 2022 election candidate profiles, Gainesville school board

The following three candidates are running for two open seats on the Gainesville School Board during the April 5 Ozark County General Municipal Election. The Times reached out to each candidate and asked for a photo and a 150-word profile to run in the newspaper prior to the election. For more information on polling locations or other local voting information, contact Ozark County Clerk Brian Wise at 417-679-3516.

Heather Bushner: It has been my pleasure to serve this community the last 6 years as a school board member. My top goal is to provide the best education possible for our students. Next, I advocate for our hard-working teachers. As a former teacher, I understand their job. For the patrons of this school district, parents and community members, I represent you, your goals and voice for this district. During my time on the board, we have made significant improvements. These include a new pre-school, vo-tech school, new greenhouse grant, increase to teacher salaries, better technology through grants, roof repairs, new lockers, new high school bleachers, four-day week, and the 90/10 FEMA grant currently in progress. Our current school board has made these improvements without a tax increase. Voters spoke, we listened. I would like to continue my service and see the completion of the FEMA project and my own students graduate from this wonderful school. 


Laramie Johnson: I am a lifelong resident of the Gainesville School District. My wife Brianna Johnson and I have two wonderful children, 4-year-old Landon and 1-year-old Brynlee. We attend church each Sunday. I’ve worked for Soil and Water in Gainesville for over 5 years. I manage state-funded, tax-payer money for cost-share programs. Brianna is a fourth grade teacher at GES. One thing I’ve done with the district: when MoDOT was widening Highway 160, I contacted Senator Karla Eslinger and Representative Travis Smith to recommend a righthand turn lane into the elementary drive for the safety of our children. I’m passionate about the education our children receive in today’s time. We need to keep great, caring staff working with our children every day. Also I want the people to feel free to talk to me and unite the community and the school the way it should be. I would appreciate your support on Election Day. 


Robby Walrath: I was born, raised and have lived in Ozark County my entire life. I attended Gainesville K-12, graduating in 1992. My son Briar is a junior at GHS. I own 160 Lawn & Garden in Gainesville, worked as a mechanic in Ozark County for 30 years and am a Barron Fork Church of Christ member. I’ve served on the Gainesville School Board for the past six years. I feel we have the best administrators, teachers and students in the county. I’m very proud of the accomplishments our board and administration has made in the last six years. I’m also proud that it’s been accomplished with grants/local support without raising property taxes. My goals if reelected are to see the FEMA shelter finished, implement a curriculum that will help our students achieve their future goals and try to do our best as a board to attract and keep highly qualified staff. 

Ozark County Times

504 Third Steet
PO Box 188
Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423