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Longtime Roanoke Rapids school board member and current Chairman Jay Carlisle announced his resignation from the board Tuesday night.

His resignation will be effective May 31.

Carlisle, the owner of Hockaday Funeral and Cremation Service in Roanoke Rapids, said the decision was based on business. “I’m down a funeral director because he is sick,” he said this afternoon. “I just need to focus on what I have going on.”

Carlisle said it was not an easy or quick decision to make. “It’s one I’ve been contemplating for a while.”

He said he ultimately made the decision after discussions with his immediate family and a close friend. “I’ve enjoyed my time on the board. We’ve accomplished a lot of great things during my term on the board. We built a new elementary school, renovated the armory and opened the early college,” he said.

In addition to those accomplishments he said the school system will be opening its new welding center in the fall. “We’ve renovated the Manning track and partnered with the city, Halifax Horizons and Halifax County tourism to refurbish the tennis courts at T.J. Davis. We got through the first phase of the Patterson Mill project and celebrated the 100th anniversary of the high school.”

Carlisle said he will miss his time on board. “It’s been part of my life for nearly 13 years. For me, it was time to make a decision. I’ve had great board members I’ve served with. Right now I want to concentrate on my business.”

Carlisle was appointed to the board in 2010 and in November of 2011 became its chairman.

“It is with a heavy heart after long consideration that I am submitting my resignation from the board of trustees effective May 31, 2023,” Carlisle told the board, which thanked him for his service to the students and staff of the school system.