Jayson Blake joins RCS Board of Education

Board member cites left-leaning politics for no vote

By: Mary Beth Almond | Rochester Post | Published October 3, 2023

 Jayson Blake

Jayson Blake


ROCHESTER/ROCHESTER HILLS/OAKLAND TOWNSHIP — The Rochester Community Schools Board of Education has selected Jayson Blake as its new trustee.

Blake was one of six candidates — also including Lori Baggot, Gary Cai, Briton Moffitt, Marcella Nasr and Heather Tyler — to be interviewed for the appointment Sept. 27.

Blake was appointed by the school board in a 5-1 vote to fill the trustee position vacated by Kristin Bull, who submitted her letter of resignation effective Aug. 30. Bull said the RCS Board has been an integral part of her — and her family’s — lives for the past nine years.

“Serving this community was one of my greatest joys. I am proud of the work I was a part of during the time I served, and I will continue to advocate for public education in all the ways I can. I am very much looking forward to shifting all of my attention right now to priorities in my personal life — mainly, on being a mom,” Bull said in an email.

Blake will serve on the board until Bull’s original term expires Dec. 31, 2024.

Blake, a parent of a third grader in the district, earned a juris doctor degree and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan. The district said he has also received numerous awards and recognition for his professional experience as a litigator.

During the Sept. 27 board meeting, Blake explained why he would be an asset to the board.

“I think I would be a good addition because I have skills and disposition that would help the board. I mentioned I am an attorney, and I see, constantly, legal issues are coming up before this board. You’re having a great deal of discussion about things, and a lot of them are things I know about,” he said, citing his knowledge about attorney-client privilege and legal invoices as a few minor examples. “I don’t know what legal issues there are coming forward, but I think I am going to be able to help you with that.”

In appointing Blake, board members cited his calmness, empathy, humility and passion for education, along with his experience as an attorney. Also resonating with the board, according to district officials, was Blake’s ability to overcome adversity and become successful despite having grown up in an underserved community.

“This is why I’m interested in education,” Blake said. “Because I think that education has transformed my life, and it can transform other people’s. I didn’t have a great K-12 education. That was subpar, and I’ve had to work harder to overcome that. … I still think that your education determines your dreams, and so I want to help all the kids in this district to reach their dreams.”

“I think that’s inspiring for our students,” said Jessica Gupta, board secretary.

Trustee Andrew Weaver was the lone board member to dissent.

“Toward Jason Blake and why I will not be supporting him to join our board … is he has the same skill set as Lori Baggot. They are both lawyers. One leans politically right, one leans politically left, and is very open in their political beliefs. That, at this point, is not something that needs to be added to our board. It adds no value to our board,” Weaver said of his vote.

Current board positions and terms of service include: President Michelle Bueltel (2024), Vice President Barb Anness (2024), Treasurer Julie Alspach (2024), Secretary Jessica Gupta (2028), Trustee Carol Beth Litkouhi (2028), Trustee Andrew Weaver (2024), and Trustee Jayson Blake (2024).