State Board of Education Mourns Death of Longest-Serving Member

Tuesday, October 01, 2019 | 02:03pm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                   CONTACT: Elizabeth Tullos
October 1, 2019                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 615-961-3382

(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) — It is with great sadness that the State Board of Education acknowledges the death of its longest-serving member, Mr. Fielding Rolston, who died unexpectedly this week in Kiawah, South Carolina at 78-years-old.

“Fielding Rolston provided invaluable service to the students and citizens of Tennessee in his nearly 25 years on the board,” said Dr. Sara Morrison, executive director of the State Board of Education. “Under his leadership, Tennessee raised expectations for student learning, elevated support for educators and witnessed dramatic improvements in student achievement. He will be dearly missed by all who had the opportunity to work and learn alongside him.” 

After more than two decades of service at the State Board of Education, Mr. Rolston retired from the Board last year. First appointed to the Board in 1996 by Governor Don Sundquist, Mr. Rolston represented the first Congressional district through three gubernatorial administrations. During his tenure with the Board, Mr. Rolston served as its chair for 12 years.
An industrial engineer, Mr. Rolston worked for Eastman Chemical Company for 38 years, retiring in 2003 as Senior Vice President. With his background in engineering and management, Mr. Rolston also served as chairman for Eastman Credit Union, Wellmont Health System, the Board of Trustees for Emory and Henry College and as a member of the National Assessment Governing Board. 

The Tennessee State Board of Education has lost a dear friend and colleague with the passing of Mr. Rolston. We offer our sincerest condolences to his family and friends.