Browning lone incumbent seeking re-election to Carmel school board


When Katie Browning first ran for the Carmel Clay Schools Board of Trustees in 2016, she had no idea her first term would include replacing a resigned superintendent and managing through a pandemic, among the many regular duties of an elected official.


It’s been a lot of hard work, but Browning is ready to continue serving.

“There have been sleepless nights and there have been tears, because I want what’s best not only for my own children, but for all of our students,” Browning said. “This is such an important role, and it’s not one I take lightly. Deciding to run again was something I had to think about, but I could never give up on these kids.”

Browning, 35, is the only incumbent among nine candidates running for school board in the Nov. 3 election for two at-large seats. Fellow school board member Lin Zheng is not running for reelection.

It was a busy first term for Browning, who said a successful school safety referendum, extending recess time at the elementary level and adjusting school day start times are among the board’s most important achievements in the past four years.

If reelected, Browning said she wants to continue implementing many of the safety and mental health measures approved in the school safety referendum, guiding the opening of two new elementary school buildings and creating one of the best workplaces in Hamilton County.

“We need to recruit, hire and train a diverse and premiere workforce,” she said. “Not only do we need to get the best (employees) into our buildings, but we need to make sure we keep them, that we’re training them and that we’re offering realistic professional development.”

Browning said she would like to see the district hire an equity and inclusion director and will work to make CCS a place where all students feel supported academically and as a person.

“I really want to make sure we create a culture where they feel physically and emotionally welcomed, safe, supported and valued as unique, individual members,” she said. “One size does not fit all.”

Browning has a bachelor’s degree in political science from Brigham Young University. She is a financial account manager at Allied Solutions. She previously worked as a CCS substitute teacher. She and her husband, Jeff, have lived in Carmel since 2013 and have a fourth- and seventh-grade student in CCS.

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