Flint, MI—According to unofficial results from the Nov. 8, 2022 general election, Melody Relerford will be appointed to fill the vacant seat on the Flint Community Schools (FCS) Board of Education.
Relerford comes to the seat by way of receiving the highest number of votes on the general election ballot among the school board candidates for the six-year term seats, which, due to a recent process change by the Genesee Intermediate School District (GISD) makes her eligible for appointment to the vacant board position.
“I’m humbled that the citizens believed in me enough to go out and vote and to actually put me in the number one position,” Relerford said, adding that it’s exciting to be starting early although it does mean less time to “enjoy” her recent victory.
The margins between the top three candidates are slim, so officials emphasized that the appointment will only take place following certification of election results, which is expected by mid-to-late November.
The term of the Board’s vacant seat ends on Dec. 31, 2022. The seat was previously held by Danielle Green, who resigned in late August as part of a condition to dismiss a lawsuit for allegedly assaulting board member Laura MacIntyre.
The GISD Board did not receive any applications for the vacant seat by its October deadline and therefore approved a new policy to appoint the 6-year term school board candidate who received the highest number of votes to fill the position.
Previously, the FCS Board had 30 days to appoint a new member to the seat following Green’s resignation. Flint Schools received an application submitted by Dr. Laura Sullivan, a professor of mechanical engineering at Kettering University, but the Board did not take action to vote on whether to appoint Sullivan.
The responsibility, therefore, shifted to the GISD Board to fill the vacant seat.
Per its new policy, the GISD board will hold a special meeting to appoint Relerford after election results are certified. Relerford would then serve the remainder of the vacated seat’s term before commencing her newly elected term, which runs from Jan, 1, 2023 through Dec. 31, 2028.
According to the unofficial Nov. 8 election results, the FCS Board will see a total of five new members—Relerford, Michael Clack, Terae King Jr., Dylan Luna and Claudia Perkins—by the start of the next year. They will be joining current board members Joyce Ellis-McNeal and MacIntyre, whose seats were not up for election this November.
The article has been updated to include Relerford’s comments after unofficial election results were reported. The original article included her comments from a Nov. 8 watch party, prior to knowing she was the top vote-getter for the 6-year term candidates.