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Ferrell Blair elected to TCSS District 2 seat

The Troup County School Board looks close to the same after Tuesday’s election, plus one additional member.

Ferrell Blair defeated Frank Barnes in District 2 by 180 votes to claim the only seat on the board that didn’t have an incumbent running.

Blair received 1,294 votes, or 53.74 percent, to Barnes’ 1,114 votes, or 46.26 percent.

On Wednesday, Blair said he was humbled by the support of the community.

“It really makes you want to do the right thing and work hard,” he said. “When people pour their hearts out and commit to what you are doing, it’s humbling.”

Blair said this election also showed there is a lot of interest in the school system.

“If we can convert this energy moving forward, we will be good,” he said.

Blair, who owns a cattle farmer and investor, has had generations of family members come through the school system. He said Wednesday the first thing he needs to do is catch up.

“You have to learn what is going on from the inside, and I am doing that as quickly as I can,” he said.

Blair added he plans on working between now and joining the board to build community support for the school system, which is a big part of his platform.

“I don’t have to be sworn in to go talk to people and build community support,” he said.

Barnes was backed by the Tax Relief and Comprehensive Education Reform, which supported four candidates for the school board. Barnes based much of his campaign on his experience in the classroom with 38 years as a teacher and several years as a coach.

On Wednesday, Barnes said he had no comment about the election results.

Blair will assume the seat of current board chairman Kirk Hancock, who announced earlier this year he would not be running for reelection. Blair’s term officially begins in January.