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Aurora school board member rejects colleagues’ call for his resignation

Aurora Public Schools board member Eric Nelson in a campaign photo.
Aurora Public Schools board member Eric Nelson in a campaign photo.
Nelson for Colorado

Embattled Aurora school board member Eric Nelson reiterated Tuesday evening that he does not plan to resign in the wake of allegations that he misrepresented his education, military experience and criminal history.

“I have no intentions of resigning from this board,” Nelson said at the first board meeting since the allegations were widely reported by the media last week.

As she promised a day earlier, board president Amber Drevon called for Nelson’s resignation. She also asked for a show of hands from board members who agreed with her. Five of the seven members raised their hands. Nelson and board member Barbara Yamrick did not.

Drevon said none of the allegations against Nelson would legally disqualify him from serving on the board. She also noted that his fellow board members don’t have the authority to overturn the decision of voters who elected him.

The board did vote to suspend Nelson from his duties as board secretary, as well as from his duties as a board liaison to “various schools and community groups.” Nelson was the only board member to vote against stripping him of his duties.

Nelson said he found it “unnecessary” to remove him as secretary “when my duties are clearly being fulfilled without incident, regardless of my personal life.” He did not address the allegations about his education or military experience but did say that his criminal matters had been adjudicated prior to his election to the board in 2013 and were public record.

Drevon directed Superintendent Rico Munn to remove Nelson’s biography from the district website. His biography says he has four degrees, some of which have been called into question.

She also directed Nelson to verify the information in his biography and asked the district to conduct a “comprehensive review” of any verification Nelson provides. She said the board will discuss that review on Aug. 2 at its next meeting.

Even after Nelson said he has no plans to resign, Drevon ended the discussion with this: “I am hopeful you will submit your resignation to me by the end of the week.”

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