Eddie Ryder wins special election for Bath School Board seat

A special election was held on Tuesday to fill the unexpired term for the Cedar Creek District seat on the Bath County School Board.  Since no candidates filed to appear on the ballot, it was decided by write-in votes.

“We have Eddie Ryder with fifty one total votes,” says Martha Glenn, Secretary of the Bath County Electoral Board.  “Trudy Woodzell with four total votes, Renee Cardwell with two, Michael Spurgeon with two.”

And there were seven other write-ins who received one vote each.   A total of sixty seven votes were cast.

“Our task today with write-ins is to look at the spellings, the variations, all of those persons who have been written in and determine which are valid write-ins, meaning can we determine that a voter intended a particular person to receive a vote,” says John Haney, Chair of the Bath County Electoral Board.  “So there were lots of variations of spellings for some individuals and so we just had to determine the intent of the voter to the best of our ability on this board.  If we felt it was a valid vote, we counted it.  I think in this case there was only one that we could not testify as being a valid write-in vote.”

Eddie Ryder won the Cedar Creek District seat which he is currently filling as an interim member of the Bath School Board.   He will be an interim member until the end of this year and then he will be sworn in in January.   He will serve until December 31, 2015 to finish out the term.  Ryder has more than twenty years previous experience on the Bath School Board.

The special election for the school board seat was the only local race in Bath County in this election.  Other races included a U.S. Senate seat battle between Mark Warner and Ed Gillespie and the House of Representatives 6th District seat, which was won by Bob Goodlatte.  And Virginia voters also approved a constitutional amendment to exempt from taxation the property of the surviving spouse of any member of the armed forces killed in action.

“We had a good turnout, higher than expected, which was pleasing to us and the election officials,” says Haney.  “We were all glad to have people show up rather than empty hours through the day.  So it’s always good when the voters turn out.”

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Bonnie Ralston

Bonnie Ralston is the Assistant Station Coordinator at WVLS and a Highland County news reporter. She began volunteering at Allegheny Mountain Radio in the fall of 2005. In 2006 she became an AMR employee and worked in Bath County for eight years as the WCHG Station Coordinator and then as the news reporter there. She began working in radio while in college and has stayed connected to radio, in one way or another, for more than thirty years. She grew up in Staunton, Virginia, while spending a lot of time on her family’s farm in Deerfield, Virginia. She enjoys spending time outside, watching old TV shows and movies and tending to her chickens.

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