The primary election Tuesday ended with two siting school board members retaining their seats and James Croft, a former county commissioner in the 1980s, defeating incumbent commissioner Michael R. Crews to return to the board in November.
“I appreciate Commissioner Michael Crews and his service to the county,” said Mr. Croft just before the final results came in at the elections office. “It began long before he was a county commissioner as a county deputy, wounded in action. He deserves a lot of credit for what he’s done for the county …”
The Olustee evangelist lost his two previous bids for a county commission seat in the late 1980s and early 1990s, but won this week’s open primary 53.3 percent to 46.7 percent, which he considers miraculous.
“I give the Lord total credit,” said Mr. Croft, 53. “We were outspent and outmanned with volunteers. This is a God thing. God worked a miracle. This is kind of like David and Goliath … This is major stuff and God gets the credit for it.”
Despite spirited campaigns to unseat long-time school board members Dwight Crews and Patricia Weeks, political newcomers Andy Johnston and Clayton Griffis lost their races by 17.8 and 12.7 percentage points, respectively.