With just 27 percent of Lincoln County’s 19,794 registered voters turning out, incumbent Lincoln County Mayor Bill Newman defeated challenger Rick Head as he won re-election to a second term in Thursday’s general election.
Newman received 3,096 votes, 59 percent, to Head’s 2,163 votes, 41 percent, according to unofficial returns, which are expected to be certified next Tuesday. Head, retired from the Chrysler Corp. and CEO of LRHc Consulting Services, serves as a current county commissioner, a seat he will give up next month as a result of his bid for county mayor. Newman had served as a commissioner for 16 years when he challenged a former county mayor four years ago. Newman is a retired veterinarian and local realtor.
County Commission Seats
Across Lincoln County’s eight districts, nine newcomers to local politics were elected to seats on the Lincoln County Commission. The top three vote-getters in each district won election.
In District 1, newcomer David Sanders led the ballot with 500 votes, followed by incumbents Darren Walker with 430 and Steve Graham with 409. Defeated was incumbent Darrin Simms, who received 328 votes.
District 2 saw all three incumbents win re-election. John Thorpe led the ballot there with 489 votes, followed by Grady Reavis with 469 and Ben Brown with 431, just 11 votes ahead of the sole challenger in that race, Terri Rogers, who received 420 votes.
District 3 was led by political newcomers Mark Mitchell, who received 462 votes, and Jack Atchley with 400 votes. Also winning election was incumbent Kate Guin with 271 votes. Falling short were challengers Mary Ann Meyer-Schuck with 225, Greg Dodson with 208 and Heather Kirkland Garcia with 152. Sharon Eubanks, a current commissioner in District 3, had not sought re-election, and Rick Head, another commissioner in the district, had sought the county mayor’s seat.
In District 4, two more newcomers led the ballot. Challengers Charles Hunter, who led the ballot with 433 votes, and Steve Spray, with 422 votes, won election, along with incumbent Randy Bradford, who followed with 336 votes. Defeated in their bids were Marie Honey Caldwell with 295 votes, Roy Butler with 196, and Mike Stevenson, with 161. Current District 4 commissioners Mark Monks and Jack Towry had not sought re-election.
In District 5, the three candidates on the ballot won election. They included incumbent Anthony Taylor, who received 369 votes, followed closely by incumbent Shirley Dangerfield with 362 and newcomer Stephanie Eady Britt with 349. Current commissioner Wayne King had not sought re-election.
District 6, another election with three candidates on the ballot, was led by incumbent Doug Cunningham with 693 votes, followed by incumbent Tori Ogle Young with 660 and newcomer Roger Martinez, Jr., with 637. Current commissioner Todd Groce did not seek re-election to his District 6 seat.
In District 7, elected were incumbent Ricky Bryant with 338 votes, closely followed by newcomer Glen Douglas with 335 and incumbent Steve Guntherberg with 306. Just nine votes behind Steve Guntherberg was Brian Guntherberg with 297. Current commissioner Tull Malone did not seek re-election in District 7.
District 8 was led by newcomer Jon Jacks with 389 votes followed by incumbents Donny Ogle with 375 and Ronald Jean with 368. Defeated were challengers Phil Marty with 339 and Jack Buck with 263. Current commissioner Chris Thornton had not sought re-election in that district.
School Board Seats
The Lincoln County Board of Education had four of its eight seats on the ballot, with the top vote-getter in each district winning election. Three of those seats will be held by new school board members now.
In District 1, incumbent Sammy Tucker won re-election with 348 votes. He defeated challengers Jason Parks with 197 votes and Brenda Daniel with 91.
District 3, where incumbent Stan Golden did not seek re-election, newcomer Susan McAlister Cowley was unopposed. She received 598 votes.
District 5, where incumbent Veronica King did not seek re-election, newcomer Carla R. Buchanan won election with 261 votes. She defeated Thuston Augustus Britt, who garnered 133 votes.
And in District 7, where incumbent Jerry Pendergrass did not seek re-election, newcomer Jared W. Bradley won election with 464 votes. Bradley was unopposed.
Wyatt Burk received 4,434 complimentary votes here in Lincoln County in his first election for circuit court judge, Part II, serving the 17th Judicial District. Appointed to the seat last fall by Gov. Bill Haslam to fill the remaining term held by Lee Russell, Burk received 18,595 complimentary votes districtwide.
Also unchallenged in their bids for re-election were Mary Jane Porter for trustee, Murray Blackwelder for sheriff, Lisa Simmons for circuit court clerk, Phyllis Counts for county clerk, Randy Delap for register of deeds, and Tim Gill for road superintendent.
Porter received 5,049 complimentary votes; Blackwelder, 4,883; Simmons, 4,801; Counts, 5,017; Delap, 5,085; and Gill, 4,937.
With four open seats, there were only two candidates on the ballot In Petersburg Town Council elections – those two candidates, incumbents Barbara Woodward and Kenneth Richardson, who serves as mayor, received 29 and 26 votes, respectively.
There were also 75 write-in votes in the election, but according to officials, none of those candidates receiving write-in votes, were certified, and consequently, won’t be reported. To be certified, they would have had to qualify by June 13.