By Kathi Bliss
Lockhart Independent School District (LISD) voters spoke clearly and firmly during the Nov. 6 General Election, when they ousted a former Board President and blocked a former Trustee from admission to the board.
Former LISD Board President Timoteo “Tim” Juarez lost the seat he has held since 2005 to challenger Carl M. Cisneros, in Cisneros’s second bid for election to the Board of Trustees.
Frustration with Juarez’s leadership blossomed last year when rumors of inappropriate “closed door” discussions among the Board were brought to light, and complaints of divisiveness and cries of “racism” plagued Board business.
Juarez took a backseat on Tuesday evening as election returns trickled in, with early voting showing Cisneros with an 85-vote lead.
As returns continued through the night, Cisneros increased that lead, closing out the night having earned 54.72 percent of the vote (591) over Juarez’s 489 (45.28 percent).
In Lockhart ISD District 2, incumbent Trustee Brenda Spillmann easily won a second term against virtual unknown Atanacio Partida.
After running virtually no race, declining to respond to forum invitations or participate in political advertising, and relying solely on name recognition Partida won a mere 416 votes (35.59 percent) against Spillmann’s 753 (64.41 percent).
District Three candidate Jessica Neyman ran unopposed, after controversy blossomed this spring regarding mapping lines. Neyman will replace seated Board president Susan Brooks, who opted not to seek another term in office.
Former Trustee John Manning sought to reclaim a seat on the LISD Board of Trustees, but was thwarted by political newcomer Jon Reyes, who carried the district by a comfortable margin.
Reyes earned 612 votes (57.86 percent) above Manning’s 402 votes (42.14 percent).
The Lockhart ISD Board of Trustees will meet later this month to canvass the vote from Tuesday’s election, and to swear in the new members of the LISD Board of Trustees.