Moms for Liberty Member Supportive of Capitol Insurrection Appointed to Florida Board of Education by DeSantis

Florida Gov Appoints Moms For Liberty Member, Jan. 6 Insurrection Supporter to State Education Board

A photo from January of Esther Byrd and Gov. Ron DeSantis at Cinotti’s Bakery in Jacksonville. DeSantis announced he was appointing Byrd to a Florida Board of Education seat on Friday. (via Florida GOP’s Twitter)

A Moms for Liberty member known for making social media posts supportive of the Capitol insurrection and being photographed on a boat flying the QAnon flag has been appointed to the Florida Board of Education.

Gov. Ron DeSantis named Esther Byrd, a former Marine who lives in Neptune Beach, to the state board earlier this month. Because her appointment came on the last day of this year’s legislative session, her Senate approval will not take place until 2023, the governor’s press office told The 74. 

“I am excited for the opportunity to serve the students and families of Florida on the Board of Education,” Byrd said in a March 14 statement released by Moms for Liberty, a conservative parent group that started in Florida in 2021 and now has chapters in 34 states. “Parents are extremely frustrated with being cut off from the decision-making process on issues impacting their children. I will work to amplify their voices, address their concerns, and fight to put children first.”

Byrd is the wife of Republican state Rep. Cord Byrd and works as a legal assistant in his office. According to his website, he’s a firearms law expert who handles many Second Amendment cases. 

Esther Byrd could not be reached for comment. Her appointment has sparked controversy because of her support for extremist views. 

“ANTIFA and BLM can burn and loot buildings and violently attack police and citizens,” Byrd wrote on her personal Facebook page. “But when Trump supporters peacefully protest, suddenly ‘Law and Order’ is all they can talk about! I can’t even listen to these idiots bellyaching about solving our differences without violence.”

Byrd, who served in the military from 2002 to 2010 and is president of the Republican Women’s Club of Duval Federated, has also talked about an approaching ideological showdown.

“In the coming civil wars (We the People vs the Radical Left and We the People cleaning up the Republican Party), team rosters are being filled,” Byrd wrote. “Every elected official in DC will pick one. There are only 2 teams… With Us [or] Against Us.”

She’s announced her support for the state’s Parental Rights in Education Bill, often called the “Don’t Say Gay bill. The Board of Education, according to the Florida Times Union, would hear administrative appeals for violations of the law. 

DeSantis also appointed Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie, a Miami radiologist, to the six-member board. Christie is currently the senior policy advisor for The Catholic Association and the treasurer of the Catholic Association Foundation.

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