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The Widefield High School's Gladiator

Here are some election results from some El Paso County school districts that had contested seats.

Donna Walsh, who worked in Widefield District 3 for 28 years before retiring in 2019, was the top vote-getter in initial results in Widefield D-3. Walsh had 20% or 2,320 votes, followed by David Dock, a longtime resident who raised his three children in the district, with 2,164 votes, or 19%, as of 10 p.m. Tuesday.

Gregory Fisher was sliding into the third open seat with 2,055 votes, accounting for 18% of ballots cast. 

Walsh wants to improve financial transparency, administrative accountability, student safety, equitable education and employee retention.

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“The status quo is just not getting things done,” said Fisher, who favors “bringing the education back to local control, under the Colorado constitution.”

Dock sees the district’s top goal as making a strong comeback in academic proficiency after 19 months of the COVID toll on students and staff.

Incumbent Susan Waller-Graham, a Widefield High graduate who has served on the D-3 board for the past eight years, appeared to have lost her seat in early returns.

Both incumbents in Cheyenne Mountain D-12 were winning their bids by healthy margins. Attorney Randy Case garnered 31% — representing 3,544 votes, the most of the six candidates competing for two seats. Case, a lifelong Colorado Springs resident and D-12 alum who garnered the support of Mayor John Suthers, raised $12,640 to promote his candidacy.

Nissa Steinhour had 3,018 votes in unofficial tallies, to fill the second open seat. 

The small district that consistently scores atop academic performance measurements has a new superintendent, and with the transition in leadership, Steinhour says it’s important for the board to have continuity.

Dr. Rae Ann Weber, a family practice physician who raised just over $17,000 to finance her campaign, was running in third place.

Sole incumbent Ed Sweazy, who has been on the Hanover D-28 board for six years, will stay for another four years, early results show.

He will be joined by rancher Thomas Lippert, who had 134 votes, or 44%, the most of the four candidates. Sweazy had 95 votes, 31% of ballots cast.

The small rural district is among the few in El Paso County that increased enrollment this year, Sweazy said.

Fountain-Fort Carson D-8 incumbent Kenneth Coffee Jr. , who was appointed to the board in May, will keep his seat, but incumbent Michelle Massaro will be ousted by challenger Shirley Martinez. Coffee tallied 1,063 votes and Martinez was at 1,020.

Candidate Rose Terrell ran unopposed for a two-year term.

Michelle Wills-Hill and Joyce Salazar, who ran low-budget campaigns, were leading the race in Harrison D-2. No incumbents competed among the five candidates vying for three open seats. 

A small number of votes separated the two throughout the night, with 2,315 for Salazar and 2,307 for Wills-Hill at 10 p.m. Wills-Hill raised $1,310 in contributions, according to campaign finance records, and Salazar had $300 in donations.

The third seat will go to Janice "JJ" Frazier, who raised nearly $5,300 to advertise her campaign and captured 23% of votes. Salazar and Wills-Hill each had 24% of votes.

Frazier worked in administrative support positions in urban, suburban and inner-city school districts for more than 40 years and wants to improve public perception of the district and increase corporate support.

Wills-Hill, a parent of a D-2 graduate, plans to work on demonstrating "integrity, trust, civility and honesty."

Salazar is a 1982 Harrison High graduate, and her children and her grandchildren have attended D-2 schools. She believes her family experiences, extensive work in manufacturing and logistics planning, and volunteer work with children will help her support students as a board member.

School board seats on the ballot for Ellicott D-22, Manitou Springs D-14 and Peyton JT-23 were uncontested.

Contact the writer: 719-476-1656.

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