The only contested School Board race went to Tad Barber, who won the District 8 seat vacated by Donna Moore Wesby.
Barber collected 51.4 percent of the vote, with 2,698 Aiken County residents voting in his favor. Wes Funderberg collected 23.4 percent and Bruce Wheelon collected 24.36 with two precincts left to be counted.
“I really just want to give thanks to the voters,” said Barber, who was in Charleston on business Tuesday night. “I look forward to working with the school board and my constituents to improve the student success rate and the facilities in Aiken County. I look forward to the next four years on the school board.”
Funderberg finished with 1,228 votes and Wheelon was just ahead of him with 1,278 votes.
“I'm disappointed, definitely,” Funderberg said. “The main reason is I don't think people got that with Tad and his wife being a part of the school system, he will have to recuse himself from a lot of the votes … so that's really disappointing.”
Funderberg said he tried to “lay low” at his home with his fiancee and avoid his phone as numbers began coming in.
“I told her and some other people that it was kind of like Christmas morning,” Funderberg joked.
Although he fell in his run for the school board seat, Funderberg hasn't counted out running again in the future.
“I'm not going to say never,” Funderberg said. “I can definitely tell you that I'm not going away. The whole school district needs help.”
Wheelon waited until late in the evening to concede but said he had no problem with the results.
“I ran a good campaign, a good race and the voters let their choice be heard,” Wheelon said. “I have no problem; Tad's a good man and I think he'll do a good job on the board. If he needs my help in any way I'll be glad to talk to him.
“He beat us both pretty soundly. The voters made it clear they wanted him.”
Ronald West, Keith Liner and Richard Hazen all won their uncontested School Board seats in District 1, 4 and 9 respectively.
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