STONEVILLE — For the first time in its 142 year history, Rockingham County’s smallest municipality has elected a woman to lead the town.
Kathy Stanley Galvan was elected mayor here Tuesday evening, according to unofficial election results.
A credit analyst by trade, Galvan captured 199 votes, defeating fellow candidate Jodi Lester by nearly 32 percentage points.
The active member of the Stoneville Rotary and Stoneville Core Group secured 65.68% of ballots cast.
After Stanley Galvan takes oath in December, she will join Stoneville Town Administrator Lori Evans Armstrong in making up the county’s only female duo to hold the top electoral and administrative positions within a municipal government.
The Stoneville native was a bit emotional when describing how it feels to be the town’s first woman mayor.
“I am absolutely blown away,” said Stanley Galvan, who shared gratitude for her fellow townspeople. “I’m just honored that the people came out and they chose, they chose who they wanted, and I’m blown away by it. It’s an honor.”
Stanley Galvan replaces Ricky Craddock, who was elected mayor in 2011 after first being selected by residents to represent the town as a council member in 2009.
Craddock, who did not seek re-election, served consecutive two-year terms before winning the mayoral race in 2015, when the city changed the election cycle for mayor to four years.
Stanley Galvan is the daughter of Marie Stanley and Bobby Stanley, a former county commissioner.
She is married to Lupo Galvan, who she called her rock and biggest supporter.
The 56-year-old has two children: Lauren, 27, a nurse; and Hunter, 24, who is currently serving in the military in Kuwait.
“Stoneville is in my heart, it’s my love,” said Stanley Galvan when asked what the municipality meant to her. “Everything I’ve ever done my whole life I’ve focused it around Stoneville. I’ve given back my whole life to this town and have been on different committees. Stoneville has been good to me, so it’s time for me to give goodness back to it and make the town proud.”
Incumbents rejoin council
Three familiar faces will rejoin town council, according to unofficial election results released by the Rockingham County Board of Elections Tuesday night.
Incumbents Chuck Hundley, Jerry Smith and Henry “Camp” Thornton return to their seats after edging out former Stoneville mayor Sammy Rex Tuggle in a tight race to fill three of the board’s five seats.
Smith, 66, will serve for a third term after accumulating 26.73 percent of votes cast for the three open seats.
Current Mayor Pro-Tem Hundley, who was first elected in 2011, received support on 25.35 percent of ballots.
Thornton, 65, regained his spot on the town board by just four votes.
First elected to his seat on the council in 2013, Thornton defeated Tuggle by less than one percentage point.