The New Hampshire Executive Council has confirmed Nashua businessman Ryan Terrell to the state Board of Education.
The vote, which fell along party lines, was a reversal of Terrell’s previous effort to join the Board.
Gov. Chris Sununu first nominated Terrell to the Board of Education last spring. Democrats on the Executive Council at the time cited his lack of professional experience in education in denying his nomination. But his race - Terrell is Black - became a flashpoint when then-Councilor Andru Volinsky accused Sununu of engaging in “tokenism” in tapping Terrell for the Board of Education. Volinsky later apologized for the remark.
Last fall, Terrell ran unsuccessfully for the New Hampshire House as a Republican. He graduated from Southern New Hampshire University in 2014. He worked in 2011 for the mayoral campaign of Ted Gatsas, who is now a member of the Executive Council. Since 2017, Terrell has worked as a project manager at a hair salon distribution company in Derry.
Sununu has said Terrell’s experience in the private sector would bring a fresh perspective to the state Board of Education. His confirmation further solidifies Sununu’s imprint on state education policy. Also this week, Sununu re-nominated Board of Education Chairman Drew Cline and state Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut to their posts. Both have been strong advocates for expanding school choice options and charter schools in the state’s education system.