The Charleston County School District Board re-elected Cindy Bohn Coats as its chairwoman Monday in a 6-3 vote.
Coats, who represents the North Area, was first elected board chair in 2012. The three dissenting votes in her re-election came from board members Michael Miller, Tom Ducker and the Rev. Chris Collins, who eased the tension of the vote by cracking a joke.
“Can I vote no and still love you?” Collins said to Coats, a fellow North Area board member. “I vote no, but I still love you.”
The school board elects its officers during the first meeting in November every year.
The divided vote on Monday capped off a year of occasional clashes on the board. Miller and Collins both were vocally critical of the school district’s process in hiring Superintendent Gerrita Postlewait, particularly when Coats rebuffed local pastor and civil rights leader Nelson Rivers’ request to postpone candidate interviews that were scheduled to take place the week after the shooting at Emanuel AME Church.
The board also re-elected Chris Staubes as its vice chairman in a unanimous vote.
Reach Paul Bowers at (843) 937-5546 or twitter.com/paul_bowers.