COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)
As of Tuesday afternoon, Susan Blackburn, current Vice President of the Columbia Board of Education, was running for reelection in April. Columbia Public Schools spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark says Blackburn decided before the end of the day to drop out of the race.
According to the school district website, Blackburn was elected to the board in 2018. She campaigned for school safety and student literacy when she secured one of two spots on the board that year. Blackburn beat out three other candidates.
Now five candidates are running to fill two open seats. The candidates include Lucas Neal, Aron Saylor, Katherine Sasser, Jeanne Snodgrass and incumbent Teresa Maledy.
ABC 17 reached out to Blackburn for a comment on the decision. As of Wednesday afternoon, she had not responded.
In a statement to ABC 17, school board member Della Streaty-Wilhoit said, "Susan is a hard-working knowledgeable and pleasant board member. And I enjoy working with her. (She) brings experience and long-standing institutional knowledge to the board of education. I will miss her."
Last week ABC 17 reported on threats being sent to members of the board.
"I can tell you that yes there has been harassment, intimidation, hostility and varying levels of threats to board members and members of our administrative team and their families," Baumstark said.