Hauser wins seat on Orange County Schools Board of Education after runoff


By Michelle Cassell
Managing Editor 

The unofficial results of the May 14 runoff for Orange County Schools Board of Education between Bonnie Hauser and Jennifer Moore show Hauser winning with 63.7% of the votes.

Earlier, Moore issued a statement on her campaign’s now-deleted website: “If the official votes by the Orange County Board of Elections reflect a secured seat in my name. I want to inform you all that I will not be returning to The Orange County Board of Education seat for the upcoming four-year term. Due to ongoing health concerns, I have made the decision to not continue my service.”

She said, “Lastly, I accept responsibility for not clarifying that I do not have a Ph.D.”

Earlier, the News and Observer reported that there were questions about Moore’s Doctorate degree. They reported that neither Bellevue University in Nebraska nor Bellevue College in Washington has a record of Moore’s degree. TLR confirmed the N&O report by contacting the universities, who confirmed that there was no record of Moore’s doctorate degree.

In earlier reporting by TLR, Orange County Elections Director Rachel Raper explained the reason for the runoff, “School board candidates have to receive at least 50% of the total votes cast to be elected, which in this race was at least 6,563 votes for each of the three winners. Moore received 6.497 votes before the counting of pending and absentee ballots on March 14”. The official results were released today, March 15. Moore has not received the required votes, finishing with 6,528. Candidate Bonnie Hauser has asked for a runoff.

On May 7, Democratic State Senator Graig Myer filed a bill entitled “A BILL TO BE ENTITLED AN ACT TO CHANGE THE METHOD OF ELECTION FOR THE ORANGE COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION TO THE PLURALITY METHOD.” The bill would prevent future runoff elections for the Board of Education if enacted. In this election, Moore would have won the seat after finishing with 6,528 votes in the initial counting.

Michelle Cassell is a seasoned reporter who has covered everything from crime to hurricanes and local politics to human interest over the course of 35 years. As managing editor, she hopes to encourage writers of a wide range of backgrounds and interests in TLR’s coverage of Southern Orange County news. 
This reporter can be reached at

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