Larry Johnson has unseated Jimmy Miller for the Mount Airy seat on the Surry County Board of Commissioners.
With all 29 precincts reporting in, Johnson held a 400-vote lead on the next-closest rival.
Four Republican challengers faced off with Miller, who finished in fourth place.
In reports from the Surry County Board of Elections, Johnson led with 2,804 votes, 32.39 percent.
School official Bill Goins was second with 2,392 votes (27.63 percent), then Van Cooke at 1,588 (18.35 percent) and Miller with 1,330 votes (15.37). Allen Poindexter had 542 votes, 6.26 percent.
Since no Democrat filed to run for the seat, this means that the winner of the primary will fill the seat starting in January.
Larry Johnson, of Greystone Lane, started Johnson Granite more than 15 years ago. In retirement he has stayed busy with church activities and volunteering for a local food bank. If elected, he will do the job for free. Johnson, 64, said he will either not accept a paycheck for his time on the board, or he will donate it to a local charity.
“There’s one commissioner who works very hard (in the area of economic development),” said Johnson. “That’s Larry Phillips, but he isn’t up for re-election. We need change.”
Goins, 47, has been in education for 23 years and is assistant principal of Central Middle School.
Van Cooke, 49, of Fairview Drive, returned to Surry County three years ago after retiring from the navy as a commander.
Miller, 82, is serving his seventh term on the board after first being elected in 1988.
Miller has missed some meetings of the Board of Commissioners this year, and one challenger suggested that it was time a younger, more able person filled the seat.
• East District Commissioner Van Tucker, Tucker’s eventual general election Democrat opponent Ronald Bowman and Register of Deeds Carolyn Comer will run unopposed in the primary.
Surry County Schools school board members Brian K. Moser and Clark Goings will also run unopposed in their bids for re-election.
Tucker, 60, of Shoals, and Bowman, 64, of Pilot Mountain may have free rides on Tuesday. However, the two will square off against one another in November’s general election.
Tucker owns Senior Quality Care in Pilot Mountain and has farmed much of his life. Bowman is retired from a career in safety and security at Northern Hospital of Surry County.
Tucker was appointed to fill the vacant seat of former commissioner Paul Johnson after Johnson pleaded guilty to four felony charges in January. Johnson’s name still appeared on Tuesday’s ballot, but since he is not eligible to hold elected office, no votes cast for Johnson will be counted.
Despite this warning, 2,206 votes were still cast for Johnson, giving Tucker just 72.82 percent.
• Pilot Mountain’s A.J. Daoud won in Surry County, but not across North Carolina in his race for Secretary of State. He captured 3,841 votes, good for 52.42 percent, while Michael LaPaglia got 3,486 votes, 47.58 percent.
Across the state, however, LaPaglia had 60.94 percent to Daoud’s 39.06 percent with 71 percent of precincts reporting in N.C.