Seven Suburban School Board Races Contested

By Bill Dries

The suburban school board races next month come down to seven contested elections in four of Shelby County’s six suburban towns and cities.

With the decisions in those races and 21 uncontested school board races, voters will have taken the final votes to put in place their own municipal school districts separate from the countywide school system that opened for its first school year Aug. 5.

The Shelby County Election Commission meets later this month to formally certify the fields for the six sets of suburban school board races in November. At the withdrawal deadline, there were only seven contested races.

(Daily News File/Lance Murphey)

Voters in Germantown, Millington and Bartlett have a total of six contested school board races to decide Nov. 7 in the set of six school board elections.

Voters in Lakeland have a single slate of seven candidates for five school board seats that go to the top five vote getters.

And the Arlington and Collierville school board races are a formality.

All that was apparent after the Thursday, Oct. 3, deadline for candidates to withdraw from any of the races if they wished.

A week earlier was the deadline for contenders in the suburban school board races to file their qualifying petitions.

Since then, Dexter L. Orman withdrew from the race for Arlington School Board Position 2, leaving only Barbara Fletcher in that race. That had been the only uncontested race in the Arlington set of seats.

And Charles Dibella withdrew from the Germantown School Board Position 4 race, leaving only Lisa L. Parker on the ballot in that slot.

That leaves the Position 1 race among Edgar Babian, Linda Fisher and Michael Paige as the only contested race for Germantown School Board.

All five school board races in Collierville were one-candidate uncontested races at the filing deadline last week.

Bartlett has two contested school board races. Erin Berry and Alison Shores are running for Position 2. And David Cook and Sharon Farley are running for Position 5.

Millington has the busiest of the five school board ballots, and the largest school board, with three contested races for seven school board positions.

Oscar Brown and Cecilia Haley are the contenders for Position 2. Jennifer Ray Carroll and Tom Stephens are seeking Position 6. And Donald K. Holsinger and Charles P. Reed are running for Position 7.

The Shelby County Election Commission meets later this month to certify the ballot and set an early voting period that will be in late October.

Tennessee law allows the election commission to not have an early voting period in Arlington and Collierville because there are no contested races on the ballots there.