By Clint Confehr
MURFREESBORO, TN — A former staff attorney and director of the Office of Civil Rights for Tennessee’s Department of Education is now an assistant city attorney here, officials announced last week.
She is Elizabeth Taylor, a magna cum laude graduate of Fisk University with her Bachelor of Arts degree in political science. Taylor is a 2009 graduate of the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law at the University of Memphis.
As assistant city attorney, Taylor represents Murfreesboro City Schools and divides her time between the school system and City Hall.
From 2015 to 2018, Taylor served as general counsel to the State Board of Education. Taylor provided the board and department staff with legal advice and drafted board policies and regulations.
Her experience “offers the city strong legal expertise in education and civil rights,” City Attorney Adam Tucker said, noting Taylor has investigated Title VI and Title IX civil rights complaints. From August 2009 to February 2013, Taylor clerked for the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals, Western Section. She has a University of Phoenix masters degree in business administration with a concentration in global management.
Promoted in August, Tucker had been assistant city attorney and interim city attorney.
Those are just two developments at City Hall where Judge Toby Gilley recently swore-in Mayor Shane McFarland and council members Madelyn Scales Harris, Rick LaLance and Ronnie Martin. Harris was re-elected with 9,014 votes; more than other candidates who sought at large seats. She’s a daughter of Robert (T-90) Scales, Murfreesboro’s first black councilman. His wife, Mary Scales (Harris’ mother), succeeded him. She was the first black faculty member at Middle Tennessee State University.
Meanwhile, William Kraus is the new executive director of the Housing, Health and Human Services Alliance of Rutherford County. It helps agencies for low income and homeless people. He’s been city manager of Oak Hill in Davidson County, and taught business courses at Tennessee State, Vanderbilt, Strayer, Argosy and Bethel universities. Kraus also directed programs for Murfreesboro’s campus of Daymar College, Owensboro, Ky.