Youngest school board candidate addresses alcohol and nicotine accusations

There’s some buzz going around about a local 19-year-old who’s running for a spot on the Clay County School Board. If this young man is elected, he will make history by being the youngest member of a school board in Florida.


Matthew Mitchell has his sights set on the District 2 seat of the Clay County School Board.

[DOWNLOAD: Free Action News Jax app for alerts as news breaks]

Clay County School Board candidate, Matthew Mitchell said, “When I get elected, I’m not here to make history on my age. I’m here to make history to be the best school district in the state.”

Mitchell comes with some government experience. He worked on Gov. Ron DeSantis’ 2022 re-election campaign and with the Florida Department of Education. He wants to take what he learned over the years and apply it in the schools.

READ: Clay County BCC approves agreement to have sheriff’s office take over school security

“That’s why I’m coming back because I have a focus on teachers, students, and parents.,” Mitchell said.

For the first time, the young candidate addressed the accusations buzzing on social media. It’s photos of nicotine and alcohol on Snapchat with Matthew Mitchell’s name as the account holder.

Youngest school board candidate addresses alcohol and nicotine accusations.
Youngest school board candidate addresses alcohol and nicotine accusations.

“When you become the clear front runner in a fielded race, negative attacks come to you,” Mitchell said. What I say to that is that’s not true.”

Mitchell denies the account is his.

He also addresses not having enough life experience because of his age.

READ: Clay County district schools achieves outstanding accreditation score with Cognia

“At 15 years old, my mom passed away from colon cancer. You’re telling me I don’t have life experience,” Mitchell said. “I had to grow up at a young age. I had my family, my God, and my schools with me. I’m here to give back to my schools and community. That is why I’m running for school board,” according to Mitchell.”

Mitchell is up against Robert Alvero and James Hughes for the District 2 seat.

The primary election for this race is on August 20.

[SIGN UP: Action News Jax Daily Headlines Newsletter]

Click here to download the free Action News Jax news and weather apps, click here to download the Action News Jax Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Action News Jax live.

Comments on this article