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Powell school board to welcome two new members

Chairman McCray re-elected

In what turned out to be a six-person race, Powell selected from nine candidates two new members to join the Park County School District No. 1 Board of Trustees, along with its returning current chairman.

Lisa Barrus and Lynn Stutzman were elected to the board, and Rob McCray will remain for a second term.

When Barrus and Stutzman begin their four-year terms Dec. 1, it will mark the first time in the board’s history a majority of its members have been female.

Dee Heny and Patty Wurzel will be the other female members while McCray, Greg Borcher and Trace Paul will be the three male members.

Barrus and Stutzman are replacing Lee Craig, who decided not to seek another term, and Republican David Northrup, who was elected the state representative for Wyoming House District 50.

According to unofficial results, Stutzman led all school board candidates with 2,084 votes (17.5 percent). McCray was second with 1,767 votes (14.8 percent) and Barrus received 1,685 (14.1 percent) to hold onto the third and final spot.

With 13.1 percent of the votes, former Powell Police Investigator Dave Brown fell just 124 tallies (about 1 percent) short of being tied with Barrus for third place. Raquel Schwab was 26 votes behind Brown, and Jeffrey Easum 141 behind Schwab.

Barrus said she thought she had won a seat on the board around 11:30 Tuesday night but felt a little uneasy after she learned a few precincts plus absentee votes were still to be counted. She stayed up until the final results were announced at 1:30 early Wednesday morning.

“I was way excited. I think with all the candidates, I kind of just assumed it might not happen,” she said.

McCray, who followed the results at Northwest College, said he wasn’t too nervous about last night.

“I was hoping to get re-elected for sure, but if that wasn’t how it was going to be, that’s OK too,” he said.

Whether McCray remains chairman is up to the board to decide during its meeting Dec. 11, the first for Barrus and Stutzman. McCray said he wishes to retain the position.

McCray said he talked with both Barrus and Stutzman Wednesday morning and said they both seemed excited.

“I’m anxious to start working with them, and I think they’ll do a great job,” he said.

Barrus said she talked with McCray about an orientation and mentoring program that would pair each of the new board members with current members who would assist them during their transition period.

“I’d love to thank everybody for their vote,” Barrus said. “I’m ready to put everything into this and do everything I can to help this organization.”

Stutzman was not available for comment by press time.

Under votes, where voters did not vote for three candidates in the race, were not taken into consideration when calculating voter percentages.

According to the district’s records, Mary Alice Johnson became the first female school board member in 1965.

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