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Six qualify for BOE races

The race is on for three open seats on the Board of Education. Each seat has two candidates who qualified by the deadline at noon last Friday, according to Phyllis Wheeler, elections director.

Running for Super District 1 are incumbent Georgia Hobbs and Kenneth McNeal. Although she is currently Vice Chairman of the BOE, and a retired educator with 32 years of service, Ms. Hobbs does not toot her own horn.

"We are serving the children of McDuffie County, and we run a clean campaign, and may the best man win," she said.

Her opponent agrees with her. As the maintenance supervisor for the McDuffie County Recreation Department, Mr. McNeal said he has "no education experience whatsoever.

"I'm all for the kids, that's the biggest reason I'm running. I want what's good for the kids and what's best for our school system," he said.

Single District 3 has no incumbent. The position was held by Louise Burgess, whose limit will expire at the end of the year. Running for her seat are Rev. Ella Mae Samuels and Alphonzo "Donnie" McNair.

Rev. Samuels is supervisor of pastors for 27 African Methodist Episcopal Churches in the region from Thomson down to Gainsville. Before she started working in the ministry, Rev. Samuels said she was involved as an administrative assistant in Emanuel County for 20 years and as a paraprofessional in Treutlen County for six years.

"So, I've always had a real passion to help the children," she said.

Mr. McNair could not be reached for comment.

Both Super District 1 and Single District 3 will be on the ballot for citizens who vote at Queen of Angels.

In the race for Single District 7 are incumbent Mike Love and Rick McCorkle. Mr. Love is a collections officer for First Bank, and said he appreciates the opportunity he has had to serve the last four years.

"I just hope the district will give me four more years, so that we can continue to improve education on all levels," he said.

Mr. McCorkle is the store manager of Bi-Lo in Thomson. Like the other candidates, Mr. McCorkle said he entered the election for the children. He said he doesn't have a "personal agenda by no means.

"Basically, I just want to be a part of the team that's going to help make our children better citizens," he said. "It's all about the young people."

The election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 7. An additional special election will be called to fill the District 4 seat, which was occupied by Nether Ivery until his resignation in May. Ms. Wheeler said she is waiting for the School Board's attorney to submit the resolution required for her to call the special election.

Web posted on Thursday, July 6, 2006

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