Drungole-Ellis wins chancery seat, 14-1 heads to runoff


Youth court judge Paula Drungole-Ellis will serve as the next chancery court judge for district 14-3 after a landslide victory over Starkville attorney and alderman Roy A’. Perkins on Tuesday night.

By: 
RYAN PHILLIPS
SDN Editor

Youth court judge Paula Drungole-Ellis will serve as the next chancery court judge for District 14-3 after a landslide victory over Starkville attorney and alderman Roy A’. Perkins on Tuesday night. 

Turnout was high across the state, including Oktibbeha County, which is predicted to see turnout close to 50 percent, according to election officials. 

With 100 percent of precincts reporting as of press time Tuesday night, excluding absentee and affidavit ballots in Oktibbeha County, Ellis held an insurmountable lead with 63 percent of the vote, with 9,928.

After the results trickled in, Drungole-Ellis said she was honored to be the replacement for Judge Dorothy Colom, who originally appointed her as a youth court judge. 

“(Colom) was the one who appointed me youth court judge and gave me the opportunity and I was able to gain judicial experience because of that,” she said. “I’m so honored and I’m going to make them proud and they know that. I’m going to follow the law, uphold the Constitution and fairly and impartially do justice.” 

Drungole-Ellis credited her ground game as being the deciding factor in her victory, which came as the result of shaking hands and knocking on doors across the four counties in District 14-3. 

The seat covers all of Noxubee County and parts of Oktibbeha, Clay and Lowndes counties.

“I believe hard work pays off and when you’re passionate about what you’re doing and when you really love people and believe in people and have the experience, people look at that and know you care for them and care for the community, not just yourself, you care about others,” she said. “I just worked hard and had a great team.” 

Perkins thanked his supporters when asked for comment following the results.

“I just want to thank all the persons who supported me in my bid to become chancery court judge for District 14-3,” he said via phone Tuesday night.

OTHER LOCAL RACES 

The chancery judge race for District 14-1, which covers parts of Oktibbeha County, will see the top two candidates face off in a runoff later this month.

The race saw Rodney Faver lead the way with 28 percent of the vote, while Lee Ann Turner managed to receive 27 percent. Elizabeth Ausbern gave a good showing, but came up just short of the runoff with 26 percent of the vote as of press time on Tuesday night. Gene Barton and Todd Bennett rounded out the race, finishing with 15 percent and 4 percent, respectively. 

The chancery court judge race for District 14-2 will also head to a runoff between Joe Studdard, who earned 38 percent of the vote, and Carrie Jourdan, who pulled in 37 percent. Gary Goodwin finished third in the race with 26 percent of the vote. 

The runoff is set for Nov. 27. 

- The SDN’s news partner, WTVA, contributed to this report. 

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