Hasbargen, Asbury, Smith win BOE seats
PARKERSBURG – The Wood County Board of Education has two new members as only one of three incumbent members retained his seat.
Incumbent Lawrence Hasbargen was the top vote-getter, receiving 3,497 votes, or 13.88 percent.
Newcomer Jim Asbury was second, with 3,203 votes, or 12.71 percent. Also new to the school board, Peggy Smith received 3,155 votes, or 12.52 percent.
Both Hasbargen and Smith ran in District C, while Asbury was from District B. The law allows for only two board members from the same district to serve at the same time.
The three join board members John Marlow from District A and Tim Yeater from District B who were not up for election this year.
Two incumbent board members, Tad Wilson from District B and Jim Fox from District A, came in fourth and sixth, respectively, out of 10 candidates. Wilson received 2,783 votes, or 11.04 percent, while Fox received 2,729 votes, or 10.83 percent.
The other candidates were Ami Shaver with 2,743 votes, or 10.89 percent, Steve Smith with 2,341 votes, or 9.29 percent, Ron Tice with 2,176 votes, or 8.64 percent, Ponnie Piggott-Sampson with 1,465 votes, or 5.81 percent, and Rene Imler with 1,078 votes, or 4.28 percent of the vote.
There were 27 write-in votes, or 0.11 percent.
Hasbargen said he has always found overwhelming support in Wood County.
“All through my career working in Wood County Schools I’ve always had a great deal of support,” he said. “I’ve tried to do what is in their best interest. We represent the community and the children, and I try my best.”
Peggy Smith found herself at a loss for words Tuesday evening, believing she had not gotten enough votes to secure a seat on the board.
“It’s still kind of a shock,” she said. “I’ve had a lot of support from family and friends and community.”
Asbury said he was excited to begin serving.
“I realize this will be a huge obligation,” he said. “I just want to make sure the board can look at the county as a whole and make sure we have a good plan for the future for our children and the faculty and our facilities.”
Both Fox and Wilson said they appreciated their time on the board, but believed the new members would do well.
“For me it’s been an honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Wood County for the past 12 years,” Fox said. “The people have spoken and I respect that. I wish the new members all the luck. I’m sure they are going to do a great job.”
Wilson especially praised Asbury who ran against him in District B.
“Congratulations to Jimmy; he ran a good campaign,” Wilson said. “He’s a good guy and will be an excellent board member.
“It’s good to have quality people running so the voters have good quality choices.”