Fair makes history with runoff win

By REGGIE ROSS

Staff Writer

The primary election is in the books, and it was a history-making event in Grenada County.

The upset of the night came in the sheriff’s race where retired Mississippi Highway Patrolman Rolando Fair defeated incumbent Sheriff Alton Strider.

Fair defeated Strider by 332 vote margin to become the first African American to advance to the General Election in the sheriff’s race.

In the end, when all 13 boxes had been counted, Fair earned 2,242 votes to Strider’s 2,110 votes.

Fair will now take on Republican candidate Ricky Downs in the Nov. 5 General Election.

Strider’s tenure as sheriff will end in January after six terms. He spent 24 years in office and was first elected to office in 1995. The winner of the November race will be the first non-Strider in the office since Weston Birdsong in 1988. Four Striders have served as sheriff since 1968.

Fair dominated at the larger voting precincts, winning 490 to 222 at City Auditorium and 579 to 208 Taylor Hall.

Strider pulled six of the rural precincts.

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