This story has been updated to say Blake Elsberry will face off against a Democratic challenger in November. He has not won the sole commissioner seat.
Republican Mike Cameron, former chairman of the Walker County Republican Party, defeated John Deffenbaugh for Georgia's House District 1 seat in Tuesday night's runoff election.
This was the second time in two years that Deffenbaugh lost a race in District 1. In 2018, 24-year-old Colton Moore beat him 2,184 votes to 1,858. No Democrats ran in that race. As Moore announced he would run against Sen. Jeff Mullis, R-Chickamauga, in the Senate's 53rd District (a race he eventually lost), Deffenbaugh set his sights on his former seat.
"I'm looking forward to getting to work," Cameron said from the LaFayette courthouse Tuesday night. "We came in second place in the primary and we didn't have a lot of money, but we worked. We did it the old-fashioned way. I kept Costco busy buying two or three tanks of gas a week driving around talking to people. I'm tickled to death by this."
District 1 includes Dade and Walker counties. Deffenbaugh served the district from 2013 to 2018.
Deffenbaugh said he was true to himself in the campaign and was disappointed in the results.
"I will support Cameron in anything he wants to accomplish," he said. "There are many things in life we either win or lose at. I had what I feel was integrity. It's just the way it is. A lot of people supported me, and I am very thankful and appreciative for everything they have done for me."
Cameron helped lead the ballot initiative to move Walker County from a sole commissioner form of government to a full, five-person commission. He said he's looking forward to meeting with elected officials in Dade and Walker counties to focus on what issues are most important to them and the voters.
Cameron won with 56% of the vote.
In the race for sole commissioner in Chattooga County, Blake Elsberry beat three-term incumbent Jason Winters. Elsberry won easily with more than 60% of the vote. Elsberry will face Democrat Jimmy Holbrook in November.
Gary Woods will be the new probate judge after beating Teresa Pope with 66% of the vote.
In Catoosa County, newcomer Vanita Hullander upset incumbent Jim Cutler for the District 3 commission seat.
"For my supporters, my team, I couldn't have asked for a better group of people," Hullander said. "I said, 'God's got this' the whole time. It's been a long and exhausting campaign and I'm appreciative for the people of District 3 that trusted me to serve them in another capacity."
Hullander has held dozens of positions on various boards in the Catoosa County community and served as the county coroner for six terms.
Cutler lost despite prominent endorsements including those of Sheriff Gary Sisk, Catoosa County Schools Superintendent Denia Reese and Mullis.
Hullander got 1,028 votes, while Cutler received 949 votes.
Robert Stultz will be on the Republican ticket for November's election after beating Alan Painter for the District 4 commissioner seat. Stultz got more than 61% of the vote.
In Murray County, Jimmy Davenport will be the new sheriff after he got 51.3% of the vote. Davenport had the support of Sheriff Gary Langford, who decided not to run for reelection.
In Dade County, Jayne Griffin defeated Brooke Wilson for the open school board seat.
Contact Patrick Filbin at firstname.lastname@example.org.