It was a close race for the Hazelwood School District Board of Education, but with each having about 26 percent of the vote, incumbents Ann Gibbons and Charles "Chuck" Woods, along with newcomer Brenda Youngblood will fill the three open board member seats.
"It feels good to know you are supported," Woods said. "It's always nice to win, because it was a trying time, as any election is."
Woods, 73, was a principal in the Hazelwood School District (HSD) for 34 years, serving at Lusher, Coldwater and Barrington elementary schools before retiring.
He first was elected to the board of education in 2005 and said some of those very students are who voted him back on the board Tuesday.
"I worked the polls and saw a lot of my students from my days as a principal," he said. "They stopped and told me they remembered me at the polls. You know because you have people that have lived in North County 45, 5o years and never left."
Gibbons, who had the slight lead against her two counterparts is always in good spirits when it comes to education and told Hazelwood Patch before final results came in she would be pleased either way. "If I win, I win. If I lose, I lose," she said.
When she spoke with Patch after 100 percent of the votes were in, she was unsure of her count until we filled her in.
"Son of a gun," she said to her lead. "Isn't that wild?"
Gibbons, who will now be able to say she's had 33 years on the board before she steps down, said she's amazed at her win. She's very thankful to the voters for keeping her in a seat she's held since 1981, she said.
"We'll continue to work on the things we've been focusing on," she said. "Student achievement and bringing the district up above state level achievement."
Gibbons along with Woods will be working with Brenda Youngblood. A newcomer to the board, but old soul to the district Youngblood's intent is also to focus on student achievement.
“We need to prepare students to be active members of the workforce," she said in an earlier interveiw. "They will be competing all the time with other citizens of the world.”
Youngblood served in the district for 22 years as a principal at Keeven and McCurdy elementary schools. She worked for the Hazelwood School District for 37 years all together.