Teacher Kelley Day joined a pair of incumbents in claiming victory Tuesday in the race for three seats on the Denair Unified School District Board of Trustees.
Carolyn Brown and Timothy Ellis also were among the top three vote getters while incumbent Denise Hurd and challenger Travis Lake trailed.
With about 90 percent of the votes counted, Day led all candidates with 542 votes, or 24 percent. Brown had 511 votes, or 22 percent. Ellis was third with 499 votes, or 22 percent; Hurd next with 395 votes, or 17 percent; and Lake last with 334 votes, or 15 percent.
Ellis was surprised by the results, which indicated Hurd would not be re-elected. "I thought Denise was an excellent board member," he said.
"Kelley will be a good board member, too," he added. "She was on the board for a short time five years ago. We have a lot happening in the next four years with the passage of Measure K (the school bond measure). Denise certainly will be involved in the building of a new middle school. And we'll be modernizing the elementary school."
Ellis added that Denair is so low-key it was hard to analyze election strategies. "In Denair, there's no campaigning. There's no signs up here."
He said that "it's word of mouth and what you do day-to-day" that gets the candidate and the message across.
Hurd said she was surprised by her apparent defeat, but that she wished the "newly elected board well. I will continue to serve the community however I can."
Although she lost, Hurd said she was happy Measure K passed. "I'm looking forward to seeing the new middle school."
Lake also was gracious in defeat.
"I was excited to be part of the process," he said. "I'm still in this for the long run. I hope to still be fully involved on some the school committees."
Before the polls closed, Lake had been cautiously optimistic. But he was unsure if the light turnout would hurt or help. "When my wife voted this morning she was only the 30th voter there."
Lake is a social work administrator who cited family as the main reason he was running.
"I have a new daughter and she will be going to Denair schools, and I have four siblings that are still attending," he said. "I want to start having positive impact on the school district."
Day, a teacher, couldn't be reached Tuesday night. Day had said she was challenging for a seat because she wanted "to work for the kids of Denair, to help promote programs that will raise our achievement."
If elected, Day had promised she would make "curriculum collaboration between the schools, elementary, middle and high school" her top priority.
Brown, 61, also couldn't be reached for comment. During her campaign, she said she hoped to continue "to make a positive difference in the lives of the students" and keep the district financially sound.
Bee staff writer Roger W. Hoskins can be reached at email@example.com or 578-2311.