West Point man selected for third term in amicable race for Northeast board

November 9, 2018

Five seats on the Northeast Community College board of governors were up for grabs, but only one race was contested in Tuesday’s general election.

Terry Nelson of West Point succeeded in his bid for re-election for the District 4 seat on the Northeast board. He defeated Samuel Schmidt of Oakland, nabbing 5,055 votes or 63 percent. Schmidt netted 3,008 votes or 37 percent.

Nelson said he was grateful the people in his service area thought he would continue to do a good job.

“The college is such an important part of our rural area and revitalizing our rural area. For me to be a part of that is such an honor, and the quality of the people that I get to serve with are just second to none,” Nelson said.

Nelson is an alumnus of Northeast and a Norfolk native. He also attended Nebraska Wesleyan University, the Mayo Clinic School of Allied Health and the University of South Dakota. He has been the director of rehabilitation at St. Francis Memorial Hospital in West Point since 1989.

This will be his third term on the Northeast board.

In addition to expressing his gratitude for those who voted for him, Nelson also praised his challenger in the race and expressed his hope that the college will seek Schmidt to become a larger part of the school’s efforts to meet its goals.

“We live in an era where people are somewhat fearful to run for elected office and to have someone with such quality as (Schmidt) is was great,” Nelson said.

Schmidt, an Oakland resident, said he ran for the spot on the board because he believes in Northeast’s vision and what it provides for the area, and he wants to support what the school does.

“I view the college as a great value to our area,” he said. “A lot of folks are standing in line for electricians and plumbers, and the college has a lot of potential to provide more of those for us.”

Schmidt expressed appreciation for the positive nature of the race.

“It was a nice race — probably as clean as any one going on in the country. I truly believe Terry is a good man, and we were both probably rooting for each other,” he said.

Schmidt said he will continue to support Northeast through fundraisers and in ways like he has in the past.

“I’m always looking to hire the folks coming out of the college, and I think that’s as supportive as there is,” he said.

Elsewhere on the Northeast board, Del Ames of Neligh will serve District 1; Carol Sibbel of O’Neill will serve District 2; Steve Anderson of Concord will serve District 3, and Julie Robinson of Norfolk will serve District 5. All were incumbents who ran uncontested in their respective races.

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