Everton "EJ" Blair, Jr., middle, candidate for Gwinnett County Board of Education District 4, laughs with his parents while taking a picture shortly after learning that he has a statistical near-certainty of victory during an election night watch party at his home in Snellville, Ga., on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018. (Casey Sykes for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
Photo: Casey Sykes/Casey Sykes
Photo: Casey Sykes/Casey Sykes

Gwinnett BOE will have first member of color

Despite technical issues that led a Gwinnett County judge to order two Snellville voting precincts to stay open later than usual Tuesday, Gwinnett County Board of Education candidate Everton Blair discovered before 11 p.m. that he had made history.

The 26-year-old Shiloh High graduate apparently won the District 4 seat making him the first black and the youngest member of the school board. Voter counts are still in the process of being certified.

“The race has not been officially called, but based on the precincts that are still out there and the lead that we have, there is virtually no way that we don’t win this race,” Blair told a crowd of about 50 supporters gathered at his house. 

The Anderson-Livsey Elementary precint near Snellville, was ordered to remain open until 7:30 p.m. The Annistown Elementary School precinct, also near Snellville  remained open until 9:25 p.m. 

Polls generally close at 7 p.m. 

 Blair took the lead early in evening as results came in and remained on top.

“I’m excited people received my candidacy in a postive way,” he said as chants of “E.J., E.J.” filled the room.

Blair said his next steps before being the January swearing-in ceremony will be to meet with students and teachers throughout the county. 

“I’m ten years removed from high school, five years out of college and a few years from teaching,” he said. “As the most current and contemporary member of the school board I want to share input from my constituents and basically do a lot of listening.” 

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