PRIMARY 2022: One runaway, one recount in school board contest

While former school board member Robin Whittaker easily captured the at-large slot on the Stanly County Board of Education, the race for the seat in district one, currently occupied by Dustin Lisk, appears to be headed for a recount.

Dustin Lisk

After all 22 precincts had reported on Tuesday night, Lisk led by a razor slim 67-vote margin, with 3,850 votes to Meghan Almond’s 3,783, a margin of 44/100 of one percent.

Candidates may request a recount when the margin of victory is one percent or less.

“I will call for a recount,” said Almond by phone on Tuesday night, noting that she wanted to make sure that absentee ballots turned in prior to the close of polls were properly counted.

“I owe it to the voters who supported me,” she added.

Lisk, when asked about the slim margin of victory, said that he fully understands Almond’s desire for a recount.

“It’s certainly within the rules,” he said, “however, I have full confidence in our board of elections.”

“I was appointed to the board in October 2021, and have been on the campaign since then,” said Lisk, who was tapped to complete the term of former chairman Jeff Chance.

Lisk also expressed his thanks to the volunteers who worked on his campaign, as well as the voters who supported him.

Almond

Almond has until 5 p.m. on the first business day after the votes are canvassed to request a recount.

In contrast, Whittaker easily dispatched incumbent Anthony Graves, former board member Melvin Poole and newcomer John Wright, garnering 3,474 votes (45 percent). Graves was runner-up with 2,479 (32 percent). Poole received 1,196 votes (16 percent) and Wright tallied 549 (7 percent).

Robin Whittaker

“I’m so thrilled with the support I received from voters all over the county,” said Whittaker. “There are so many people who worked with me on this, and I can’t thank them enough.”

Whittaker, who last served on the board 12 years ago, serves as financial secretary at Hickory Ridge High School in Cabarrus County.

“I feel that I can bring a unique perspective to the board,” she said, adding that improvements in recruitment, retaining teachers and compensation are needed.