PRIMARY ELECTION UPDATES: Check here for latest Lawrence City Commission, Lawrence school board results

Editor’s Note: Check back here for updates on how the primary election for the Lawrence City Commission and the Lawrence school board is progressing today. Once vote totals start rolling in after the 7 p.m. closing of the polls, we’ll update them here.

Vote counting also is done for the night for the Lawrence City Commission. There’s no drama for the final spot in that race like in the school board, but there are signs the November election could be a close one. Incumbent Stuart Boley finished in the third spot tonight, but by only about 80 votes. He will need to stay in the top three in November, if he wants to win another term on the commission.

Political newcomer Amber Sellers is on his heels.

None of that, however, should overshadow the top two vote winner. Incumbent Lisa Larsen jumped out to a lead early and held it all night long. She was the top winner four years ago when she last ran. Bart Littlejohn, who is a member of the city’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and a past president of the Pinckney Neighborhood Association, had little trouble finishing in the second spot. He was nearly 300 votes ahead of Boley. If that result stands in November, Littlejohn will win one of the two four-year terms up for grabs. (The third-place finisher only wins a two-year term.)

Here’s a look at the entire field as vote counting ends for the night.


The vote counting is done for tonight, and we have tie at the end of the evening. School board candidates Melissa Clissold and Elizabeth Stephens are tied for the sixth spot, which is an important one because only the top six vote winners move on to the general election in November. Whoever wins that spot will have some work to do because only the top three vote winners in November get a seat on the board, but obviously step No. 1 is getting to the general election.

Vote counting will continue with ballots are that are received in the mail but postmarked today, as dictated by state law. Here is a look at the school board results at the end of the evening.

Here’s a look at the latest results as of about 8:40 p.m.

8:25 p.m.

New results for the School Board race show there has been a change in that sixth-place spot, which is the last spot that will advance to the general election in November. Melissa Clissold has jumped over Elizabeth Stephens for that final spot. But many more votes still to be counted.

Here’s a look:

• Kelly Jones: 1,479

• Kay Emerson: 1,297

• GR Gordon-Ross: 923

• Andrew Nussbaum: 700

• Nate Morsches: 654

• Melissa Clissold: 482

• Elizabeth Stephens: 479

• Markus Logan: 414

• Myranda Zarlengo: 370

• Travis Tozer: 318

• Douglas Redding: 306

• Leticia A. Gradington: 147

8:20 p.m.

New results for the City Commission race. Larsen still is in the lead, but fellow incumbent Stuart Boley has fallen into fourth place. The top six move on, but candidates always want to finish in the top three of the primary because it positions them well for the general election, when only the top three win a seat. Here’s a look:

• Lisa Larsen: 1,574

• Bart Littlejohn: 1,349

• Amber Sellers: 1,235

• Stuart Boley: 1,203

• Ma’Ko’Quah Jones: 1,152

• Milton Scott: 573

• Shawn Pearson: 258

• Chris Flowers: 210

• Gillian Rogers Shaw: 71

8:05 p.m.

The first results for the Lawrence school board race show incumbent Kelly Jones jumping out to an early lead, and they also show a tight race shaping up for that sixth and final spot that will move onto the general election in November. About 90 votes separate positions No. 6 through No 10. Here’s a look:

• Kelly Jones 891

• Kay Emerson: 752

• GR Gordon-Ross: 543

• Andrew Nussbaum: 421

• Nate Morsches: 407

• Elizabeth Stephens: 292

• Melissa Clissold: 253

• Markus Logan: 248

• Travis Tozer: 208

• Myranda Zarlengo: 200

• Douglas Redding: 161

• Leticia A. Gradington: 70

7:55 p.m.

The first results of the night have been released, and incumbent Lisa Larsen is the clear leader in the Lawrence City Commission race. There’s also, though, a pretty good separation between position No. 6 and position No. 7. As reminder, the top six vote-winners in tonight’s election moves on to the general election. Here’s a look:

• Lisa Larsen: 921 votes

• Bart Littlejohn: 755 votes

• Stuart Boley: 722 votes

• Amber Sellers 722 votes

• Ma’Ko’Quah Jones: 669 votes

• Milton Scott: 367 votes

• Shawn Pearson: 161 votes

• Chris Flowers 151 votes

• Gillian Rogers Shaw: 46 votes

We’ll update with the Lawrence school board vote totals shortly.

5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021

Voter turnout continues to be light in today’s primary elections for the Lawrence City Commission and the school board.

A report from Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew listed total voter turnout at 6.7% as of 3:30 p.m. this afternoon.

Polls remain open until 7 p.m. tonight.

1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021

With nearly half the voting day done, less than 4% of registered voters had turned out to vote in the primary election for the Lawrence City Commission and the school board.

A report from Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew listed total voter turnout of 3.55% as of 11 a.m. on Tuesday. Only one voting location in the entire county had a voter turnout of more than 10% as of the 11 a.m. mark. The voting location at the Sacred Ground Center near the Haskell Indian Nations University campus — which serves precinct No. 34 — had the highest turnout at 10.8%

The polling places at Vintage Church, 1501 New Hampshire, and at the Golf Course Superintendents Association headquarters building, 1421 Research Park Drive in west Lawrence, were the only two polling locations to register above 7% turnout at the 11 a.m. mark.

Today’s primary election will determine the six candidates both in the city and school district races that will move on to compete in November’s general election.


12:55 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021

For those of you who like to watch election returns in person, don’t make the mistake of showing up at the Douglas County Courthouse tonight.

This election will be the first one where the county uses its new election headquarters office in The Malls Shopping Center at 23rd and Louisiana streets.

The county is leasing space in the spot that used to house Epic Fun, the arcade and laser tag business that eventually closed. The approximately 8,500-square foot space now serves as the offices for the county’s election staff, and also will be the place where election results are tabulated. Previously candidates and interested onlookers have gathered at the historic Douglas County Courthouse in downtown to watch the results come in. That tradition now will move to the new offices 711 W. 23rd Street.


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