Friends recognize Nyssa’s Bullard at retirement

By John L. Braese

The Enteprise

NYSSA – After 41 years of service on the Nyssa School Board, Don Bullard said goodbye to friends and staff on Friday during a reception held in his honor.

Bullard started his service on the board sitting aboard a tractor plowing.

“I was approached while I was out plowing and asked to serve,” said Bullard, now a retired Nyssa farmer. “That was a long time ago.”

At the time, he was serving on the school’s budget committee, a time he remembers well.

“It was the first year we were in negotiations with the teachers’ union,” he said. “The agreement with classified employees was two pages long and the non-classified agreement was a single page.”

Bullard’s wife, Connie, retired two years ago after working as a scale clerk at Ore-Ida.

“He is not giving it all up,” she said. “It will be different having him home on Monday nights.”

Bullard said he wanted to see the construction launch for the new Nyssa Middle School before he called it quits.

“It is time for some new ideas from some new people,” Bullard said.

Looking back over 41 years of meetings, Bullard said the trip to Portland by the entire teaching staff of all the schools was the most memorable time.

“We were able to take the whole staff to Portland where we met the governor and were awarded for closing the gap,” said Bullard.

Bullard does admit missing most of the last 41 years of Monday Night Football, which he may now start watching.

He doesn’t, however, plan of retiring from his post at Nyssa football games. After every touchdown by the Bulldogs, Bullard hits the fuse on his cannon in the end zone, driving a loud boom throughout the valley.

“I will be there every Nyssa football game,” he said.

“He has invested a great amount of time in the well-being of the district with students always being the focus,” said Nyssa Superintendent Jana Iverson.  “Don’s service and interest in our students extends well beyond board meeting attendance.  He has attended many conferences, ball games, concerts, and ceremonies because he wants to make a difference.”

Iverson said the cannon will continue at games as will listening to Bullard.

“When Don has something to say, we all listen because he always puts great thought into what he is going to say and has insight that we know should be acknowledged,” Iverson said.

Bullard said he will remain on the board of the Malheur Education Service District. He is the longest serving member in the state of an ESD board.