Crawford, Pickens earn school board nods
Tuesday’s primary vote decided the results of the District 1 and District 5 races for seats on the Putnam County School District board, while the District 4 race will be decided in a November runoff.
District 1 challenger Holly Pickens defeated incumbent and two-term school board member Nikki Mussoline Cummings with 10,339 (82.65 percent) of the unofficial votes, while Cummings received 2,171 votes (17.35 percent).
“I am incredibly grateful to the voters of my county, our county,” said Pickens, a former teacher. “I look forward to serving on the school board as we move forward in our educational system.”
Each of the three District 4 candidates, Bud McInnis, Linda Lou Osborne and Dianne Williams, were seeking first-time election to the school board because incumbent District 4 board member Kathy Jorgensen did not seek re-election.
Since none of the candidates received 50 percent of the vote, the top two vote-receiving candidates, McInnis and Osborne, will face off in a runoff in November.
McInnis received 4,725 votes overall (38.70 percent). Osborne received 3,844 votes overall (31.49 percent). Williams, who did not qualify for the runoff, finished with 3,639 votes overall (29.81 percent).
“I am honored and excited for this door to open,” McInnis said following the unofficial results. “That is about it right now.”
“I gave it a good fight,” Williams said. “But you can’t fight the good ol’ boys in this county. I have no hard feelings though.”
Linda Lou Osborne, who initially thought she lost the race, said, “I am a little bit relieved. I feel better now. I feel rejuvenated.”
District 5 incumbent, and current school board chairwoman, Jane Crawford, defeated challenger Paul Adamczyk in the primary by receiving 7,653 votes (61.92 percent). Adamczyk received 4,707 votes overall (38.08 percent).
“I am very relieved and very excited,” said Crawford, a former Palatka High School teacher and guidance counselor. “I am ready to continue the great work that we’ve been doing over the past few years, pushing this county in the right direction.”