Site last updated: Sunday, July 21, 2024

Log In

Reset Password
MENU
Butler County's great daily newspaper

School board election roundup

Voters went to the polls Tuesday, May 16, to sort out eight primary election races in seven school districts across Butler County. Winners announced below, according to unofficial election results, will move on to the general election on Nov. 7.

Knoch School District

Seven of eight candidates running in the primary election for Knoch School District’s board will proceed to the November ballot, where they will face off for five open seats, according to unofficial results.

On the Republican ballot, incumbent William Gebhart narrowly took first with 16.83% of the vote, 13 votes above second-place Justin Kovach.

Also moving forward on the Republican ballot are Jesse Scheller, who received 1,344 votes, or 12.99%, Donna Eakin, who received 1,534 votes, or 14.83% and David McRandal who received 1,151 votes, or 11.13% of the total.

Republican Corey V. Check will not appear on the November ballot.

On the Democratic ballot, longtime board member Debra Miller took first place with 17.92% of the vote, although she finished outside of the top five on the Republican ballot.

Also moving forward on the Democratic ballot is Tim Danehy, who received 471 votes, or 14.83% of the vote. He placed third on that ballot.

Seneca Valley School District

Though only one candidate is moving forward in the Region 6 race, two will move forward in the Region 2 race within the Seneca Valley School District, according to unofficial election results.

Michael Jacobs bested Kim Nagel in Region 6 for the Republican nomination. Of the total 398 votes cast, Jacobs won 272. Nagel received 124.

In the race for Region 2, candidates Kayla Burgert and Kari Zimmer cross-filed. Of the 569 total votes on the Republican ballot, Burgert will move on to the general election as the Republican candidate with 319 votes. Of the 393 total votes on the Democratic ballot, Zimmer will move on to the general election as the Democratic candidate with 243 votes.

Susan Harrison, who cross-filed, will move on to the November ballot for Region 3, and Nick Brower, who also cross-filed, will be the candidate for Region 7. Both seats were uncontested.

Karns City Area School District

Voters in Karns City Area School District were split on who to choose, according to unofficial election results.

The top five on the Republican ballot are Denny Kelly, with 573 votes, or 18.32% of the vote; Joshua Price with 566 votes, or 18.1% of the vote; William Summerville with 461 votes, or 14.74% of the vote; Tara Hackwelder with 416 votes, or 13.3% of the vote; and Donald Scherer with 385 votes, or 12.31% of the vote.

On the Democratic ballot, the top five were Price with 254 votes, or 20.67% of the vote; followed by Hackwelder with 216 votes, or 17.58% of the vote; Dr. Brenda Ealey with 208 votes, or 16.92% of the vote; Summerville with 194, or 15.79%, of the vote; and Joseph Boltz with 177, or 14.4% of the vote.

All but one of the candidates in the primary are either currently serving on the school board or previously served on the board, the lone exception being Scherer, who is also the only candidate who did not cross-file across both tickets. Scherer filed solely as a Republican.

The election results will be affected by out-of-county results. Parts of the school district are in Armstrong and Clarion counties.

Moniteau School District

Six candidates will proceed to the November ballot in the Moniteau School District’s board race, where they will compete for five seats, according to unofficial election results.

Proceeding to the November ballot with a Republican nomination are Travis Beachem with 639 votes, or 14.34% of the vote; Todd Minnear with 612 votes, or 13.74% of the vote; Brittney Beachem Larimore with 601 votes, or 13.49% of the vote; Mark E. DeMatteis with 556 votes, or 12.48% of the vote; and Kathy McBride with 550 votes, or 12.35% of the vote.

Jennifer Rottman is the sixth to move forward, earning her spot on the Democratic ballot.

The top five on the Democratic ballot were DeMatteis with 276 votes, or 15.52% of the vote; McBride with 249 votes, or 14% of the vote; Beachem Larimore with 246 votes or 13.84% of the vote; Beachem with 231 votes, or 12.99% of the vote; and Rottman with 222, or 12.49% of the vote.

Butler Area School District

Five candidates for the Butler Area School District school board were chosen during the Tuesday primary to continue to the November election, where five seats are up for grabs, according to unofficial election results.

These include current board president Jennifer Cummings and current board vice president Jennifer Daniels-Wells, along with challengers Terry Stivason, Cecilia Tomko and Phil Heasley.

Cummings earned 2,195 votes, or 24.42% of the vote, on the Democratic ballot, and 3,188 votes, or 19.13%, on the Republican ballot.

Jennifer Daniels-Wells received 1,994 votes, or 22.19% of the vote, on the Democratic ballot, and 2,389 votes, or 14.34%, on the Republican ballot.

Terry Stivason received 2,034 votes, or 22.63%, on the Democratic ballot, and 2,696 votes, or 16.18%, on the Republican ballot.

Heasley received 2,263 votes, or 25.18%, on the Democratic ballot, and 2,859 votes, or 17.16%, on the Republican ballot.

On the Republican ballot, Cecilia Tomko received 2,607 votes, or 15.65% of the vote.

Four of the Butler Area candidates cross-filed to compete on both tickets, while two others — Cecilia Tomko and Tess Walko — filed as Republicans only. This ensured that all four of those who also filed as Democrats would advance regardless of the order.

This primary comes on the heels of the departure of former board member Bill Halle, who resigned from the school board on April 30 after allegations that he was involved in a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old. Halle, whose term expires this year, was also to be on the ballot of this primary, but a judge struck his name from the ballot in March after he failed to file a statement of financial interests.

Slippery Rock Area School District

An incumbent is moving forward in the Slippery Rock School Board race, where one seat is up for grabs, according to unofficial results.

Incumbent Region II seat-holder Gregory Schiller earned 471 votes, or 67.09% of the vote, on the Republican ballot. Republican Matthew Karns received 223 votes, or 31.77%. No Democratic candidates filed to run in the school district.

Freeport Area School District

Buffalo Township voters were split in their support for Freeport Area School District board candidates, according to unofficial results.

The top five candidates on the Republican ballot were Sylvia Maxwell with 609 votes, or 20.29% of the vote; followed by Dino Digiacobbe with 565 votes, or 18.82% of the vote; Dan Ritter with 480 votes, or 15.99% of the vote; Samuel Ross with 361 votes, or 12.03% of the vote; and Greg Selinger with 360 votes, or 11.99% of the vote.

On the Democratic ballot, the top five candidates were Maxwell with 346 votes, or 18.11% of the vote; followed by Adam Toncini with 297 votes, or 15.54% of the vote; Michael Huth with 292 votes, or 15.28% of the vote; Digiacobbe with 284 votes, or 14.86% of the vote; and Selinger with 266 votes, or 13.92% of the vote.

The election results will be affected by out-of-county results. Part of the school district is in Armstrong County.

This story was updated May 17, 2023 to reflect that Susan Harrison advanced in an uncontested race in Seneca Valley Region 3 and that David McRandal, who received 1,151 votes, or 11.13% of the total, will move forward in the Knoch race. A previous version of the story said that Mark Taylor was the candidate who advanced in Region 3.

More in Government

Subscribe to our Daily Newsletter

* indicates required
TODAY'S PHOTOS