Silas Mullins of Pineville took the early lead in the Democratic race for the District II Wyoming County Commission race and held it. He took 999 votes in unofficial returns, with 39 of 39 precincts reporting.

Mullins is a retired teacher and coach.

“Wyoming County has given so much to me over the last 34 years, I now want to give my time and energy to help make our county safe and clean,” he said prior to the election.

“I will work diligently with the other commissioners to provide safe, affordable water to every citizen of Wyoming County,” he pledged. “I will work every day to insure that Wyoming County is a safe and clean place to live and raise our families.”

Six other Democrats also filed for the position currently held by Russ Davis.

Joe Sparks of Pineville and Allan R. Stiltner of Davy battled back and forth through the evening for the second and third position. Sparks ended the evening with 483 votes and Stiltner earned 809 votes, also with a few electronic votes to be counted.

Other candidates included Beverly Graham Riling of Wyoming with 519 votes; Bruce O. Williams, Pineville, with 294 votes; Mervin Cook of Keyrock, 245 votes; and F. Lee Fischer, Brenton, had 100 votes.

No Republican filed for the commission seat nomination in the primary.

Davis, who currently serves as commission president, is retiring when his term concludes at the end of this calendar year, giving him 18 years on the commission.

He won his last election without campaigning and spent only $42.50 on materials.

“It’s been a pleasure to serve,” Davis said. “I’ve enjoyed every minute on the commission and the people of Wyoming County have really been good to me.

“I just thought it was time to let someone else have it for awhile,” Davis said.

Davis also served terms on the Oceana council and the county Board of Education.

In the separate, non-partisan election, conducted with the primary, three board of education seats — those currently held by Morgan Keith “Mike” Davis of Mullens, Mitchell Ray Stevens of Rock View, and Arnold Harless of Clear Fork — were on the ballot.

Davis took the early lead to hold his District I seat, but Harless, District III, ended in the top spot. Harless ended the evening with 2,134 votes and Davis had 1,845.

Tommy Knotts, who was defeated in the last board of education election, has never held public office. He took 1,841 votes, unseating Stevens.

Harless is a long-time member of the board. He’s a retired educator, having worked as a teacher in both elementary and secondary schools, a guidance counselor, principal, and assistant superintendent before his retirement.

“I feel that I have a good working knowledge and background in education and that I can continue to contribute to the advancement of the school system,” Harless said. “The education of students must be the first priority for everyone in this office.”

A former mayor of Mullens, Davis said he sought reelection “because of a genuine desire to represent and balance the best interests of the students, faculty, administrators, service personnel and citizens of Wyoming County with regard to all matters brought before the board.

“My goal is to provide strong leadership combined with the willingness to listen to all concerned parties, coupled with responsible, compassionate, and fair decision making,” Davis said.

Stevens, a District II incumbent, had 1,747 votes.

Larry Cooper of Pineville ended the election with 1,717 votes.

In the board of education race, those elected take office July 1.

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