And the winners are…

Well, winners might not be the precise term, but four lucky candidates have indeed been named to the brand new Guilford County Board of Elections – and county election officials think they know who the fifth and final member will be.

Under new state statutes governing county boards of elections, the newly formed NC Board of Elections appoints four members – two Democrats and two Republicans – to the five-member county boards of elections, while Governor Roy Cooper appoints the fifth and final member.

The previous Guilford County Board of Elections was dissolved in December by changes in state law, but the new county board just named looks a lot like that previous board.  On the Republican side, the state board named Eugene Lester and Kathryn Lindley, and, on the Democratic side, it appointed Rev. T. Anthony Spearman and Carolyn Bunker – the only new face on the board.

The fifth seat isn’t final yet, but there seems to be little doubt at this point that it will go to Jim Kimel, who would serve as the new chairman of the board if the governor does in fact appoint him.

Guilford County Board of Elections Director Charlie Collicutt said this week that he expects Kimel will be named to fill out the board and run it.

“Jim was submitted by the Democrats, and the assumption is that he will be appointed by the Governor as the chairman,” Collicutt said.

Collicutt added that there’s still no official word on that fifth selection.

“That’s not finalized, and I don’t know when the governor will do the chair appointments,” Collicutt said.

Kimel is a former Guilford County district attorney who has previously served as chairman of the elections board.  Lindley, likewise, is also an attorney who’s chaired the board.  Lester is a Greensboro attorney who serves on the Greensboro Zoning Commission. Spearman is the president of the NC NAACP, and Bunker lives in High Point and has served as president of the Democratic Women of Guilford County.

Staff at the Board of Elections office said on Friday, Feb. 15 that it’s not clear when the new Guilford County Board of Elections will meet for the first time.  In the past, the regular meetings have been held on the third Tuesday of every month – which would be February 19 – however, meetings are usually called by the chairman and the county is still waiting to get one of those.