Bill Edwards elected South Fulton mayor, Stonecrest races decided

Five months after voters in South Fulton and Stonecrest decided they wanted to form cities of their own, they finally know who their leaders will be.

In South Fulton, residents elected Bill Edwards as their mayor. They also chose seven members of city council.

Stonecrest residents picked three city council members in a runoff, filling out their first government after voters chose their mayor and two other council members last month.

Edwards, 67, bested Benny Crane to lead the city of nearly 100,000 people. They faced each other in a runoff Tuesday.

Edwards is a former Fulton County commissioner. He ran for mayor saying that he wanted to lead an administration that brought all residents together, whether they had voted for the city or not.

He said in an interview before the runoff that his governmental experience and relationships with the leaders of other cities would help South Fulton avoid some of the early stumbles that new cities can face.

His goals for leading the city include the reduction of illegal dumping and a reduction in crime. He said the new city should have a customer service model like QuikTrip or Chick-fil-A.

“There’s so much stuff I’d like to do,” he said. “I want to make sure this city becomes all it needs to be.”

In addition to Edwards, South Fulton residents elected: Catherine Rowell to represent District 1; Carmalitha Grubs for District 2; Helen Willis in District 3; Naeema Gilyard to represent District 4; Rosie Jackson in District 5, Khalid Kamau for District 6; and Mark Baker as the District 7 representative.

In Stonecrest, incoming Mayor Jason Lary will soon by joined by five council members when the city begins doing business in the next few weeks.

Voters approved creating Stonecrest, a city of 50,000 people in southeast DeKalb County, during a referendum in November.

Stonecrest voters elected Rob Turner to Council Post 1, George Turner to Council Post 4 and Diane Adoma to Council Post 5. In last month’s election, Jimmy Clanton Jr. won Council Post 1 and Jazzmin Cobble won Council Post 3.

In the most-watched of races, Turner narrowly defeated Mary-Pat Hector, a 19-year-old who may be the youngest person ever eligible to run for elected office in Georgia.

Residents in Johns Creek and Roswell also went to the polls Tuesday to elect city council members. In Roswell, Lori Henry won that race. Chris Coughlin will be the new council member in Johns Creek.

Unofficial results for Metro Atlanta municipal runoffs


Chris Coughlin 10,010 - 63.81%

John Patrick Flores 5,676 - 36.19%


Lori Henry 10,601 - 57.81%

Marie Willsey 7,738 - 42.19%


Post 2

Rob Turner 437 - 53.1%

Plez A. Joyner 386 - 46.9%

Post 4

George Turner Jr. 867 - 50.64%

Mary-Pat Hector 845 - 49.36%

Post 5

Diane Daniels Adoma 662 - 54.4%

Tammy L. Grimes 555 - 45.6%



Benny Crane 5,302 - 40.15%

William Bill Edwards 7,904 - 59.85%

District 1

Willie G. Davis 606 -28.43%

Catherine Foster Rowell 1,519 - 71.48%

District 2

Damita Kay Chatman 1,133 - 45.94%

Carmalitha Gumbs 1,333 - 54.06%

District 3

Louis M. Bell 690 - 33.48%

Helen Zenobia Willis 1,371 - 66.52%

District 4

Naeema Gilyard 1,052 - 54.59%

Mandisha Rhomas 875 - 45.41%

District 5

Rosie Jackson 690 -51.45%

Corey Alan Reeves 651 -48.55%

District 6

Khalid Kamau 1,127 -66.80%

Charlean Parks 560 - 33.20%

District 7

Mark Baker 879 - 58.60%

Linda Pritchett 621 -41.40%

Staff writer Lauren Foreman contributed to this report.