11/05/08 — McCullen takes commission at-large seat

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McCullen takes commission at-large seat

By Steve Herring
Published in News on November 5, 2008 1:46 PM


Sandra McCullen, left, is greeted in her home by Clarice Lewis after beating Hal Keck for the at-large seat on the Wayne County Commission.

Dr. Sandra McCullen of Dudley has become the second woman to ever be elected to the Wayne County Board of Commissioners.

Mrs. McCullen claimed that distinction in Tuesday's election by defeating Hal Keck for the at-large seat on the board. The seat was left open when veteran Commissioner Atlas Price of Seven Springs decided not to seek re-election.

Mrs. McCullen, a Democrat and an assistant superintendent with the Wayne County Schools, captured 26,580 votes (55.55 percent) to 21,271 (44.45 percent) for Keck.

She said the vote sent a message about what residents expect as the county commission and school board move forward with plans to improve facilities and educational offerings.

"It says that the citizens of Wayne County are ready for a change and that they want collaboration between all boards, and I am looking forward to providing that leadership," she said.

She also thanked those who have been a part of her campaign.

"I am pleased at all of the support I got from my family, friends and citizens of Wayne County," she said.

And even though she is now a county commissioner-elect, Mrs. McCullen said she will be back at work today in the county schools' administrative offices.

Mrs. McCullen has said her job will not conflict with her role as commissioner. She said that she plans to retire at some point, but is not ready to do so yet.

She said she is ready to get to work as a commissioner to not only improve education, but to address other county issues as well.

"I look forward to working with the commissioners," she said. "The citizens of Wayne County want to see the issues they have identified, particularly education, to be addressed, and I feel I have a lot to bring to the table."

She added that she is proud of the race she and opponent Hal Keck ran.

"It was a positive campaign and the citizens of Wayne County are ready for positive change," she said.

Keck said he was disappointed in the outcome.

"I congratulate Sandy on a well-run campaign," he said, adding that he thought the high Democratic turnout for Sen. Barack Obama might have contributed to Mrs. McCullen's victory.

Keck said that, for now, he does not intend to run for office again.

"I may serve on a committee," he said. "I serve on a number of them now. I will give my business more attention and work in the trenches to generate good Republican candidates to run in the future."