LEXINGTON -- Lexington will have a new mayor for the first time in 34 years.
Challenger Brian White defeated Eugene Parkison 531-450, a difference of 81 votes, according to unofficial results published by the Richland County Board of Elections.
"I'm excited about our community -- growing schools, growing business," White said. "I think this brings opportunities to bring the village together. This is about moving forward together."
He will be sworn in on Jan. 1, 2020.
Parkison, who has been mayor of Lexington for the past 34 years, could not be reached for comment. He is believed to be the longest-tenured mayor in Richland County.
White, 64, has spent the previous 18 years serving as a village council member. He is the currently serving on Village Council. White has served on all seven council committees.
He is also a retired U.S. Coast Guard commander, which White said helps him have a strong skill set in collaboration.
White said he hopes to see his village surpass a population of 5,000 people, which would change Lexington from a village to a city.
"Whether we are a city or not, we are going to act like a city," the new mayor said. "It's Lexington's time now."