Columbia County voters picked Regina Buccafusco as their first at-large elected school board chairman in Tuesday's runoff election.
With all but provisional votes left to count, Buccafusco received 6,614 votes over Lee Muns, who got 5,583 votes.
"I'm really grateful to my supporters, to all those within the school system who came out to vote for me," she said.
An eight-year veteran of the school board, Buccafusco said she believes voters recognized the importance of keeping an experienced school leader on the board as the system prepares to welcome a new superintendent.
Superintendent Tommy Price plans to retire at the end of this school year.
"I think they (the voters) wanted someone with my experience during this time of transition," Buccafusco said. "They wanted someone they knew they could count on."
Muns said he was proud of the campaign he ran.
"I think I brought value to the election by bringing up important issues that needed to be talked about," he said.
He said he also hopes Buccafusco lives up to a campaign promise to improve communication with her constituents.
"I've had a lot of people complain to me that she didn't return phone calls," Muns said.
Political newcomer Lawrence Hammond became the odd man out when Buccafusco and Muns defeated him in the Nov. 7 general election.
In the past, the school board selected its own chairman. The state General Assembly changed the post to an at-large elected position in its 2005 session.
Buccafusco assumes the chairman's role in January.
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