The heartfelt gratitude and compliments from Cobb County Board of Education members heaped on executive secretary Angela Carder brought a smile to her face at the .
The appreciation for Carder’s efforts was clear as each board member explained why she would be missed after her retirement, which became effective at the end of May.
Those compliments included:
- Tim Stultz of Smyrna’s Post 2: “Your help is so tremendous, it’s beyond words. Any time that we have a question, you’re right there answering it for us.”
- Chairwoman Alison Bartlett of Post 7 south and west of Marietta: “Again, thank you. … Please come up so we can give you hugs.”
David Morgan of South Cobb’s Post 3 said Carder was “a symbol of stability.'' The board’s presentation to Carder was “very humbling,” she said later, because she always viewed the school boards and the superintendents she served by the positions and not by the people who held them.
“My loyalty easily transfers to the people in those chairs with the board members and superintendents,” she said. “The issues that are discussed and decided are for the constituents to judge, so I totally remove myself from that.”
Carder started working for the in 1984 as a media clerk at . In 1988 she became the secretary for Fred Sanderson, who was the executive assistant to Superintendent Thomas Tocco.
Eight years later Carder became the secretary for Superintendent Jerry Ingram, the first of six superintendents she served. Three years later she started serving the Board of Education as its liaison.
Carder has known 31 school board members and 10 superintendents.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I leave all of you, but I feel that the time is probably right,” she wrote in an email to board members April 29. “Thank you for being here and for what you do.”
Carder, who has been married 44 years to Charles and whose two grown sons graduated from Lassiter, said that with Sanderson retiring at the end of June, the time felt right to retire.
“It’s really hard to do because it’s been an awesome experience,” she said. “My regret is that I did not keep a journal of the last 23 years. Every moment of every day, there could’ve been an experience I could’ve written down. It was fun and challenging—and challenging would mean a lot of really serious incidents that I was present for.”
The bond Carder and Sanderson share after 10 years of working together is evident. They came to the Central Office together in 1988 and are leaving together after 23 years.
“He’s the best there,” she said, because they both focused on the 107,000 students and 15,000 employees. “That’s pretty simple.”
Sanderson said he always appreciated Carder’s work ethic, frankness and "passion about education."
“We’re almost like siblings,” he said. “We fuss and fight, but we love each other. She’s an excellent secretary. She’s much more than a secretary, and the school system is definitely going to miss her.”