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Harvey Means to replace interim Carl Raley as Blue Devils’ leader

By By Adam Prestridge
The Escambia County Board of Education unanimously selected Lowndes County native Harvey J. Means to replace interim Carl Raley as the principal of Escambia County High School during its meeting Thursday afternoon.
Raley, a native of Atmore, was one of the four other applicants for the position and was joined by current ECHS assistant principal Linda Shufford.
The board selected Means, who has been a principal for seven years in the Lowndes County School System, at the recommendation of a selection committee whose members were chosen by the board and superintendent Billy Hines.
Means, 49, has been principal at Hayneville Middle School since 2003. Prior to his current position, he was the assistant principal at Central High School from 2001-03 and served as director of the Lowndes County Alternative School from 1996-2001.
Hines refused to release the process by which the members of the committee were selected, the names of those members and the formula they used to determine their recommendation when questioned by The Atmore Advance during the meeting. A follow-up phone call to Hines Friday morning resulted in a voicemail from Hines Friday afternoon stating that he had mailed the names of the committee to the Advance that day. The board’s attorney Broox Garrett confirmed that he advised Hines to provide the names to the Advance Friday morning.
Means, who resides in Montgomery County, received an associate’s degree in general education from Lomax Hannon Junior College in Greenville and a bachelor’s degree in history and political science, a master’s degree in K-12 special education and a K-12 certification for administration and supervision, all from Alabama State University.
Means has been active with numerous community programs in Lowndes County. He currently serves as a board member for the Boys and Girls Club of South Central Alabama, The Central Alabama In-Service Center and the Lowndes County Public School Policy Committee, as well as, a member of the Lowndes County Local Emergency Planning Commission and Lowndes County Family Service Center.
In an exclusive interview Friday afternoon, Means told the Advance that he would be entering his new role with an open mind, withholding comments in terms of any changes he would like to make.
As for his reasoning for making the career move, it was prophetic.
Although his role of principal at ECHS will be his first at a high school, Means said other opportunities to be principal at the high school level have been presented to him.
In addition, Means expressed that he is excited to become a part of the Atmore community.
Means added that his transition from Lowndes County to Escambia County would be quick.
See Wednesday’s edition of The Atmore Advance for a complete list of names that made up the ECHS principal selection committee and the process used during their selection and the principal’s selection.