Three incumbents win in contested Atlanta school board races

1:04 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017 Atlanta Education News
Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com
Atlanta school board incumbents Leslie Grant, left, Eshe' Collins, and Cynthia Briscoe Brown won reelection Tuesday.

Atlanta school board incumbents Leslie Grant, Eshé Collins, and Cynthia Briscoe Brown won re-election Tuesday, meaning a majority of the current board will return.

Grant, who represents southeast Atlanta District 1, defeated Ade Oguntoye to hold onto her seat on the Atlanta Board of Education.

Collins, who represents south Atlanta District 6, defeated three challengers to hold onto her seat. 

Briscoe Brown bested two challengers to retain her at-large District 8 post.

Byron Amos, the other incumbent in a contested race, finished first in his three-way race but fell just short of topping 50 percent of the vote. He will move on to a runoff election against Keisha Carey, who works in a corporate position for Sprint, to represent central Atlanta District 2.

Two incumbents were unopposed in their reelection bids: At-large District 9 board member Jason Esteves, who leads the budget commission, and board vice-chairman Nancy Meister, who represents north Atlanta District 4.  That means at least five incumbents will return to the board for another term.

In the open race for the west Atlanta District 5 seat, Erika Mitchell and Raynard Johnson are the top two finishers who will proceed to a runoff election. 

In the other contested at-large race, for the District 7 post, attorney Kandis Wood Jackson finished first and John Wright appeared to come in second place, narrowly defeating Patricia Crayton for a spot in a runoff election. Wright is a program manager for the architectural engineering firm AECOM.

The east Atlanta District 3 race featured five newcomers. Michelle Olympiadis-Constantinides, a real-estate manager and afternoon Greek school coordinator, finished first and will face Adzua Agyapon, an educator at the public charter school KIPP STRIVE Primary, in a runoff election.

In races for three school board seats for Marietta City Schools, with 100 percent of the precincts reporting there was an one race where an incumbent was ousted. 

Challenger Angela Orange was holding more than 55 percent of the vote, with incumbent Jeriene Bonner-Grimes holding about 44 percent for seat 5. 

Incumbent Jason Waters held a commanding lead, winning more than 74 percent of the vote over Arthur Vaughn for seat 2. 

Incumbent Allison Gruehn won about 82 percent of the vote over challenger Camile Jones for seat 4.

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