Featured photo: From left, Sharon Hightower, Tammi Thurm, Goldie Wells, and Marikay Abuzuaiter pose for photos after the results of the election in the Guilford County Courthouse in Greensboro N.C., on July 26, 2022. (photo by Juliet Coen)

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story set Hugh Holston’s margin of victory over Katie Rossabi as 54 votes. The actual number was 554 votes. TCB regrets the error.

It was a good night for incumbents, as the more experienced Democratic candidates held off challengers in every race, with the exception of District 3.

That’s where former council member and current president of Downtown Greensboro Inc. Zack Matheny retained the seat he held from 2007-15, when he stepped down for the DGI job. Current District 3 Rep. Justin Outling lost his bid for mayor in a very tight race, and Matheny’s opponent in the race, Chip Roth, dropped out of the race for health reasons just after the primary.

Yvonne Johnson waits for the election results in the Guilford County Courthouse in Greensboro N.C., on July 26, 2022.

“Things we started 10 years ago have happened,” Matheny said, referencing the Tanger Center and the Megasite. “What’s our 10-year plan now?”

Mayor Pro Tem Yvonne Johnson once again got the most votes for the at-large seats with 25 percent, followed by incumbent Marikay Abuzuaiter who had about 20 percent. Hugh Holston, who was appointed to his seat in 2021 after Michelle Kennedy stepped down to take a job with the city, edged out his closest opponent, Republican Katie Rossabi, by 554 votes.

“This is the last one,” Johnson said on Election night, intimating that she would not be running again in 2025. “I’m serious.”

District 1 incumbent Sharon Hightower convincingly defeated her opponent, Felton Foushee, with nearly 78 percent of the vote. 

“It’s a good day in District 1,” she said, thanking her constituents for coming out.

District 2 was close until the end, with incumbent Goldie Wells fending off challenger CC Crawford by just 121 votes.

Wells said she understands the challenges in her district, and that “District 2 has more development right now than any other district,” including large projects like the development near NC A&T State University and the Urban Loop.

Nancy Hoffmann locked down her race early, besting Republican challenger Thurston Reeder by 900 votes in early voting and then carrying the day with nearly 65 percent of the vote.

And in District 5, Tammi Thurm once again beat Republican Tony Wilkins, who was appointed to the seat when Trudy Wade went to the NC Senate in 2012. Thurm beat Wilkins by fewer than 10 points and 500 votes in 2017. This year she widened the margin by a couple points and a couple hundred votes. She credited the endorsement from the Firemen’s Union with putting her over the top.

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