Board Of Education
All legal authority for the operation and management of the school program in the Van Buren School District (VBSD) is vested by law in the Board of Education. The seven member board makes all major decisions regarding school district priorities, policies, expenditures and growth. The nonpartisan board members are elected to serve, without compensation, for a term of four years. State law does not limit the number of terms a member may serve. Selection of school board members is conducted at the annual school election held on the third Tuesday in September.
The VBSD Board of Education meets the second Tuesday of each month. The meetings begin at 5:30 p.m. and are held in the Administration Building at 2221 Pointer Trail East or at individual school sites. Special meetings of the Board are called by the President as needed.
Lance Lanier, President
Lance and his wife, Laura, have three children who each have attended Van Buren High School. Lance serves as the Executive Vice President of Citizens Bank & Trust Company where he has worked since 1986. He is a 1985 graduate of the University of Arkansas and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration. He is also a graduate of Southern Methodist University Southwest School of Banking.
Kevin Bell, Vice President
Kevin and his wife, Edie, have three children, all graduates of Van Buren. He is a 1988 graduate of Van Buren High School and is a 1992 graduate of the University of Arkansas. Kevin is the President of Jimmy Bell Real Estate Company. He serves on the Board of Directors of Citizens Bank & Trust Company and is a board member of the Van Buren Education Foundation. Kevin and his family are members of First Baptist Church in Van Buren.
Bob Freeman , Secretary
Bob graduated from Van Buren High School in 1973 and attended the University of Oklahoma on a ROTC scholarship. Commissioned as an artillery lieutenant in the United States Army in 1977, he retired as a Lt. Colonel after 20 years of service. While in the Army, he earned his Master’s from the Florida Institute of Technology. Bob and his family moved back to Van Buren in 1997. He enjoyed a successful career at Citizens Bank & Trust Company, before being elected Mayor of Van Buren in November 2006. He served as leader of the city for 12 years. Bob is married to his high school sweetheart, Terry, and they have two adult children, Sarah and David.
Theresa is a 1990 graduate of Van Buren High School. She and her husband Kenny have five children, Christopher, Samantha, Tori, Devin, and Eliza. Theresa is a therapist at The Forging Place in Van Buren. She serves as President of the GFWC-Women’s League of Van Buren and is a member of Merge Church.
Jacob Howell is the Founding Pastor of Merge Church in Van Buren. He is also a licensed attorney and operated the Howell Law Firm in Van Buren before transitioning to full-time ministry. Upon graduating from VBHS, he attended the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Howell graduated with his Juris Doctorate from the University of Tulsa College of Law and returned to practice law in his hometown. He and his wife Kristen live in Van Buren with their three children.
Christy and her husband, Robert, have two children, Erik and Rachel. Erik is a 2010 VBHS graduate and graduated from Arkansas Tech University in 2014. He holds a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology and is pursuing a Master’s in Counseling at the University of Arkansas. Rachel is a 2013 VBHS graduate and a 2017 University of Central Arkansas alum. She earned a B.S. in Biochemistry and Psychology and is pursuing her MD at the UAMS College of Medicine. Christy and Robert are both graduates of Arkansas Tech University. Christy is a retired CPA and Robert is a CPA employed by Stryten Manufacturing.
Carman and her husband Todd have three children and have been fortunate to call Van Buren home since 1999. They have three children, all who have attended the Van Buren School District. Carman received a B.S. in Biology/Chemistry from UALR, but now works from home and serves as a community volunteer. Carman is a member of Community Bible Church.