WHITLEY COUNTY – Long-time Whitley County Board of Education member Delmar Mahan passed away Friday morning following an illness.
Mahan had unexpectedly resigned in October 2017 after nearly 27 years of serving on the board of education, noting medical and personal reasons.
“Everything that’s been done in this district has always been about the children— nothing more, nothing less. I’ve just been so fortunate to have been a part of it,” Mahan said during a special-called meeting in December 2017 in which he was honored.
Mahan began his tenure with Whitley County in January 1991, serving various positions on the board, including chair. In addition to his nearly 27 years as a board member with the district, Mahan spent nine years on the Kentucky School Board Association’s Board of Directors in several positions. He was also the recipient of the 2014 Warren Proudfoot Award sponsored by the Kentucky Parent Teacher Association, an award given to school board members who exhibit distinguished leadership and community service.
Bill Scott, former executive director of KSBA who served next to Mahan in many roles, attended a special-called meeting in December 2017 to honor Mahan and spoke in length to the character, integrity and hard work that Mahan put into everything he did to help further advance public education.
“When I arrived at KSBA in 1995, Delmar was already a very prominent member of our association and over the next 18 years or so that I served in KSBA, he served in virtually every leadership role that the association had. I can say, without a doubt, that for the eight years I was executive director, Delmar was the single most influential member on the association board,” said Scott. “I just want to thank you for the service that you provided to Whitley County, to KSBA, to the public schools of Kentucky and I just want to tell you that it’s been an absolute pleasure to work for you and with you.”
In October 2017 when Mahan announced his resignation, he said:
“This is difficult. It really is. It’s been an honor and a privilege to have served Whitley County all these years. Like John Wayne said, ‘When it’s time, you got to ride into the west. Get on the horse and ride.’ And it’s time for me."
No details on funeral arrangements were available as of press time Friday.