Dillard, Sipe and Carter win Bibb school board primaries

acastillo@macon.comAugust 21, 2012 

Bibb County voters gave both school board incumbents seeking re-election votes of confidence Tuesday.

District 1 incumbent Ella Carter and District 3 incumbent Sue Sipe won their Democratic primary races, while former teacher Thelma Dillard defeated two opponents in District 2.

Carter, the former principal of Northeast High School who is finishing her first term, secured 2,056 votes against challengers Brenda Sutton with 845 votes, and Michael McKeever with 183.

Carter has no Republican opposition in November.

Carter said her voters are familiar with her “old school” approach to education, emphasizing discipline and qualified teachers in the classroom.

“I’m not a politician. I’m here for the children,” she said.

In District 3, Sipe defeated Merritt Johnson. Sipe had 824 votes to Johnson’s 703.

The race isn’t over for Sipe, who will face off against Republican Angela P. Freeman for the school board seat in November.

In District 2, Dillard had 1,610 votes compared to 398 votes for challengers Angel Davis-Hopper and 291 votes for Alan P. Taylor.

Dillard previously had no challengers in the seat vacated by Tommy Barnes, who is term-limited. That changed when a court order reopened qualifying, allowing Taylor to enter the race in July and moving Davis-Hopper from Tom Hudson’s District 5 to District 2.

The court order also allowed McKeever and Johnson to enter their respective races during the reopened qualifying period.

Dillard, who served 20 years on the Macon City Council, faces no Republican opposition on November’s ballot.

To contact writer Andrea Castillo, call 744-4331.

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