PLYMOUTH — The Plymouth-Shiloh Local Schools Board of Education will see a mix of new and familiar faces starting next year.
Incumbents John Hart and Debra Noble each retained their seats, while fresh face Kevin Ray Echelberry just scratched out a victory, according to unofficial results from the Richland County Board of Elections.
Hart and Noble earned 256 and 245 votes, respectively. Echelberry earned 238 votes. The three victors defeated Sally Hoak, who was appointed to replace former school board member Casey Rogers in November 2018, and newcomer Gretchen Huttleston, who each earned 203 and 234 votes respectively.
The winners will join board president Doug Hamman and board member Angela Hall when their four-year terms begin in January 2020.
Hart has more than 41 years of experience in the Plymouth-Shiloh School District, working as a teacher for 12 years, a middle school principal for 18 years, and high school principal for 11 years. He is now wrapping up his sixth year on the board of education.
In a pre-election interview, Hart said his understanding of school development, management, operation, and the fiscal responsibility of a school district best equips him for a role on the board of education. He’s been involved in curriculum development, facility development, negotiations, athletics and numerous student-related initiatives throughout his career.
Noble retired as a teacher from the district in 2013 after teaching first, fifth, and seventh grades over the course of 25 years. She has been on the board of education for four years and currently serves as the vice president.
In a pre-election interview, Noble cited one of the board's major accomplishments as the building of an all-weather track, which she says was "a dream for our community since back in the 1970s."
Echelberry's professional experience includes 44 years working for Shelby’s ArcelorMittal. He retired in 2016, but has remained otherwise active in the community acting as an official for local sports teams and by managing the finances and property at Presbeterian Church in Plymouth.
In a pre-election interview, Echelberry said he hoped to support Plymouth-Shiloh's superintendent and teachers if elected.
“I think we have excellent teachers here,” he said. “And I think long-term, we need to try to continue to get good teachers. We want to make sure kids get the good education they need.”