JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday announced that he has appointed Esther Byrd to the state board of education.
Byrd, of Neptune Beach, is currently a legal assistant and office manager for her husband’s law office, Rep. Cord Byrd. He serves as a Republican lawmaker in the Florida House of Representatives, representing Nassau County and parts of Duval County.
Esther Byrd stirred controversy last year when she tweeted about the siege of the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
The tweet read: “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. Every elected official in DC will pick one. There are only 2 teams… With Us [or] Against Us.”
News4JAX asked Rep. Cord Byrd about the tweet.
“No, and I laugh because you’re in journalism and people use hyperbole all the time,” Byrd replied. “The speaker of the house has said, and I quote, ‘I just don’t know why there aren’t uprisings all over the country.’”
Byrd said his wife’s post speaks to a war of ideas or division within the Republican party, not an actual civil war among citizens.
Esther Byrd also made comments supportive of QAnon after the couple was photographed on a boat flying a QAnon flag, Florida Politics reported.
The Byrds deactivated their Twitter accounts after the backlash as a form of protest but Esther Byrd remains active on Facebook.
Esther Byrd unsuccessfully ran for Neptune Beach City Council in 2020. She previously served in the United States Marine Corps from 2002-2010.
Esther Byrd still has to be confirmed by the Florida Senate before joining the board.
Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie, a radiologist in the Miami Area from Key Biscayne, was also appointed to the board by Gov. DeSantis. She is currently the Senior Policy Advisor for The Catholic Association and the Treasurer of the Catholic Association Foundation.