It looks like Mancos schools will have one new board member and two familiar faces.
Voters elected in incumbents Pam Coppinger and Tim Hunter and newcomer Katie Cahill-Volpe, as of the unofficial results Tuesday night.
“Mancos school district is a stellar school that I am proud to be a part of,” Coppinger said. “I would like to thank all who have supported me in any way. And look forward to the next four years.”
Voters were able to vote for three candidates. Of the total 3,228 votes cast at the time of the latest unofficial results, Coppinger led the way, earning 655 votes, 20%, followed by Hunter with 559, 17%. Cahill-Volpe received 471 votes, 15%, although fellow newcomer Nick Manning was close behind at 438 votes, 14%.
This election was especially contested, with eight candidates vying for three seats. Coppinger and Hunter were the only two incumbents running, while everyone else was new to the board.
The other seat up for election was held by former Treasurer Ed Whritner. Whritner resigned in June to take on a new position coordinating project-based learning efforts for the district.
Besides Cahill-Volpe, the other candidates included parents Bridgett Jabour, Tressa Jukes, and Gina Love; Nick Manning, who runs a company that focuses on international education; and Adam Priestley, a parent and former Mancos secondary principal.
Jabour took 361 votes (11%), Jukes 186 votes (6%), Love 329 votes (10%), and Priestley 229 votes (7%).
Coppinger has lived in Southwest Colorado on and off since her youth, and previously taught in the Mancos School District Re-6.
At a candidates forum, Coppinger said she was running because she loves children and wants to see through the projects the board has started. She pointed to her position as a former teacher as helping her as a board member.
“Being a member of any board is very different depending on the organization,” she told The Journal on Tuesday. “As a retired teacher, I have the privilege of knowing quite a bit about how the school operates and who the partners are that work with the district.”
Hunter, the other incumbent, moved to Mancos in 1994, and he owns and operates a building business in town.
He said at the previous forum that he is running to help see through projects that have been started, and will continue to listen to the community.
Hunter said that trusting and supporting teachers, particularly those working with young people at transitional ages, is the best way to prepare students for a changing future.
And newcomer Cahill-Volpe is a parent in the district, who formerly served on the accountability committee. She works as a sales manager for a publishing company.
She said at the earlier forum that she is running on behalf of her children and all community members, and would like to engage in the new project-based learning initiatives and tackle the challenges of the new school campus, along with being a strong voice for equity in education.