Eula Battle, the wife of Tommy Battle for nearly 30 years, is the executive director of Free2Teach, a Huntsville-based non-profit that provides teaching material, classroom equipment and school supplies for some 89 schools, with more than $1 million in assistance this year. She is making frequent campaign appearances on behalf of her husband – and this week she makes an appearance in Battle Blog, talking about her time on the campaign trail:
Our first campaign TV commercial began airing this week, and I think it’s awesome. It’s so professional and so classy. It represents what you want an elected official to represent and tells the story of what Tommy has done in Huntsville and North Alabama. Plus, it’s got that cute baby in it. For those that don’t know – my grandson, George, is featured in the commercial.
I got a note from a friend after she saw the commercial. She said it was wonderful. And if that sweet baby doesn’t get him votes, nothing will.
I wish I had been keeping up with all the counties I’ve been to. Tommy reminds me that he’s been to all 67 counties in Alabama and he’s well on his way to a second visit to all of them. I think I’ve been to half of them by now, or at least driven through all of them.
Caroline Kennedy, one of our great staff people, goes with me most of the time and she does the driving, so I can catch up on my email and my Free2Teach duties. That’s a big help.
We’ve been to meetings in the big cities and in the small towns. This week, we were going to a cookout and some of the people on the campaign were teasing me that they’d be serving “mountain oysters.” I just laughed and told them, “That’s no bull.”
My first time out, I went down to the Greater Birmingham Republican Women’s Club and I was really nervous about it. But they were so nice. They had a trip to Washington and they asked if I wanted to go. Then they said they have “Politics and Bunco,” and they wanted me to come back and play. That was very, very sweet.
When I get up and talk about Tommy, I’ll mention I’m a school teacher and the importance my husband and I have put into making education in Alabama better. Education is the key to creating economic success for all of Alabama. We can do better.
I don’t think I’ve been to one place where there hasn’t been at least one schoolteacher in the audience. They really latch on. They’re interested in my non-profit Free2Teach, and that’s gratifying to me. I co-founded Free2Teach several years ago out of my garage. It’s grown significantly into a warehouse in north Alabama. We provide free school to thousands of teachers.
The average teacher leaves with more than $500 in classroom materials. People always tell me how Free2Teach is needed in other areas, since budgets are so tight and teachers have to come up with so much of their teaching materials on their own. That’s something I’d like to see grow across the state. I’ve told everyone that I’ll happily come talk to their organizations and help get it started. And that’s my goal when Tommy is elected.