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April 2 election to decide contests for Jackson Ward 4, Oak Ridge R-6 School Board

It was a flurry of activity in Oak Ridge as filing for the April 2 election drew to a close Tuesday, Jan. 15. In the last few days, four candidates filed for the Oak Ridge R-6 School Board. Up until those last few days, no one had filed for the seats currently held by James Seyer and Jason Glueck.

With four candidates and two open positions, there will be an election on April 2.

The candidates are Ronald Tracy, James Urhahn, Robert Eisenhauer and Chris Layton.

Meanwhile, the Jackson R-2 School Board will not have an election April 2, as two seats are up for election (those of Brian Thompson and Dan Stover), and two candidates have filed (Brian Thompson and Paul Stoner). By state statute, when the number of candidates equals the number of open seats, no election is required.

Stover chose not to run again. He is completing his fourth term (12 years) on the Board.

Brian Rivenburgh had filed for School Board when filing opened in December, but his duties changed at his job, and he was required to be out of town when the Board meets, so he withdrew.

Thompson currently is serving as vice president of the School Board.

Stoner is a former Board member. He was elected in 2012 when he and incumbent Brent Wills beat out incumbent Cathy Goodman and challenger Pat Wissman.

When Stoner ran for re-election in 2015, Wills chose not to run. Newcomers Kelly Waller and Sheila King defeated Stoner and challenger Brad Noel.

Thompson and Stoner will both be sworn in for their second terms at the Board meeting which follows the April 2 election.

Jackson Mayor Dwain Hahs and four aldermen are running unopposed in April. The unopposed aldermen are Wanda Young and Paul Sander (both Ward 1), David Hitt (Ward 2), and Katy Liley (Ward 3).

There will be a contest in Ward 4 as incumbent Tom Kimbel and challenger Steven Lee have both filed.

Sander will continue to serve in Ward 1 as a replacement for Phil Penzel, who resigned last year to avoid conflicts of interest as his company, Penzel Construction, vied for the design-build contract of the Jackson Police Station (and won). Sander was appointed by Mayor Hahs to fill Penzel’s seat. Sander’s term will be for one year; it will expire when Penzel’s two-year term would have ended in 2020.

Gregory Dullum has worked for The Cash-Book Journal for more than 25 years. Prior to becoming the editor in May 2017, he was production manager, circulation manager and reporter. Before moving to Cape Girardeau in 1988, he was editor of the Saint Louis Park Sailor, a weekly community newspaper in suburban Minneapolis, MN. A native of Minnesota, he returned there after graduating with distinction in 1978 from Ambassador College in Pasadena, CA, with a degree in mass communications. His wife, Marie, whom he met in college, is a native of Zalma, a small town in southeast Missouri. They have two grown daughters and five grandchildren. Gregory may be reached at

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