KATY, Texas (FOX 26) - In an unusually close vote, a new person will replace a 27-year incumbent on the Katy Independent School District Board of Trustees. The election was on May 7, but on May 13, it came down to the provisional ballots.
Russell Faldyn, from the Katy ISD Community Education department, made the announcement.
"The total votes for Mr. Adams was 1,472," said Faldyn inside the Katy ISD boardroom. "The total votes for Mr. Scott, 1,475."
George Scott, who had a 7-vote lead as of May 7, saw his margin decrease to 3 votes once the provisional votes came in, but it is still enough for a victory. This unseating of long-time incumbent Joe Adams is the closest vote the school district can remember.
Terri Majors, a retired Katy ISD principal, represented Scott as the provisional ballots were counted.
"I have pretty deep roots here," said Majors after the final vote count. "I love the district, and think highly of so many people here, and I think our board does a great job, but we needed change."
Majors said Scott changed the way school board candidates campaigned. He used social media, posting videos detailing his positions online.
Scott has been a public policy researcher for decades and served as an appointee to the Harris County Hospital District Board. It's ironic for Scott to be elected to Katy's school board, because only a few months ago, his effort to form a shadow school board and be Katy ISD watchdog failed.
Gayle Fallon, former president of the Houston Federation of Teachers supported Scott then, and she supports him now.
"The Katy administration has had a rubber stamp board," Fallon told FOX 26 News by phone. "I would say that's over."
"I represent a component of the community that believes there are reform steps needed," Scott told FOX 26 after his win was announced. "I will pursue those with passion, but I'm also going to try to build teamwork, and working relationships with members of the board." Scott learned of final election results during interviews with the six finalists for the Katy ISD superintendent's position.
"I think the board has taken an extraordinarily major step by letting me sit in on the superintendent interviews," said Scott. "While I have not been able to participate, I now have a good feel for the candidates and I appreciate that opportunity."
Joe Adams could not be reached for comment on Friday afternoon, but he has been actively interviewing superintendent candidates on this day.
The school district says the final canvassing of the vote will take place on May 18. The winner will be sworn in on May 23, but it's still unknown if Adams will seek a recount.