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Four-Year Term: Childress defeats re-election challenge in School Board’s only contested race

By Bill Short

millington school board pictureIn this year’s only contested Millington School Board race, Cody Childress defeated Emile G. Sigee on Tuesday as one of three members elected to four-year terms.

In Position 4, Childress received 1,400 or 69.24 percent of the 2,022 votes cast, while Sigee got 618 or 30.56 percent. Four write-in ballots were cast in that race.

Cecilia “C. J.” Haley and Larry Jackson were unopposed in Positions 2 and 6, respectively.

Haley received 1,850 or 99.36 percent of the 1,862 votes cast in that race. Twelve voters cast write-in ballots.

Jackson got 1,919 or 99.64 percent of the 1,926 votes cast. Seven voters cast write-in ballots in that race.

Childress and Haley were each elected on Nov. 7, 2013 to an initial one-year term on the board. While he was uncontested, she successfully competed with Oscar Brown, who is now employed as supervisor of Operations and Transportation for the municipal school system.

Jackson was appointed on July 14 by the Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen to fill the position left vacant by Jennifer Carroll’s resignation.

Carroll was elected last year to an initial one-year term in Position 6. She resigned on June 19 to apply for a teacher position in the school district and was hired at E. A. Harrold Elementary School.

A native of Mississippi, Haley has lived in Tennessee most of her life. She has been a resident of Millington since she and her husband got married in 1999. Their 11-year-old son is enrolled this year in Millington Middle School.

A 1966 graduate of Millington Central High School, Jackson served as an alderman from 1984-88. He has also been a member of the Millington Industrial Development Board and the Millington Sports Authority, as well as the Board of Directors of the Millington Area Chamber of Commerce.

Since 2001, he has been president of the Patriot Bank in Millington.

A native of Memphis, Childress graduated from Frayser High School in 1974. After getting married at age 21, he moved with his wife to the Raleigh area of north Memphis.

Fourteen years later, they moved to the Lucy area. They have two sons and two grandchildren.

Since 1987, Childress has been the owner of Splash Plumbing in Lucy. Two years ago, he retired from the Memphis Fire Department after more than 28 years.

His wife was employed by the Shelby County School System for 17 years as a medical records clerk at Millington Elementary School. This summer, she was hired for the same position in the municipal school system.

During a telephone interview Tuesday night, Childress said it was “exciting” to have a challenger in this election. He expressed appreciation to Sigee for running “a very clean race.”

Childress acknowledged that, when he began his re-election campaign, he was “a little concerned” about “the numbers.”

“But it looks like, in the end, the people approved of the job that we’re doing,” he said. “And I hope this is a vote of confidence for the whole board.”

While noting that the past year “went by very fast,” Childress said “a lot of work” was done. And he is looking forward to continuing to “build” the municipal school system.

“We’ve come a long way,” he concluded. “But we’ve still got a long way to go to get financially sound and stable.”

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