Tim Beaty, an Alexandria substitute teacher and afterschool program tutor in Arlandria, has won the Jan. 9 special election to fill the vacant District A School Board seat after defeating local real estate agent Gina Baum.
A longtime resident of the Lynhaven neighborhood of Alexandria, Beaty won the election with 1,270 votes (56.29 percent) to Baum’s 962 votes (42.64 percent). Just 5.47 percent of the 41,335 registered voters in District A turned out to cast ballots as severe weather moved through the area. Provisional ballots have yet to be counted with final results scheduled to be certified in the Voter Registrar’s Office Jan. 12.
The District A seat, which represents Old Town, Del Ray, Potomac Yard and Arlandria, became available when Willie Bailey, a former City Councilman, abruptly resigned at the end of November.
"I bring a love and admiration for the students, teachers and support staff I've been working with,” Beaty said during the campaign. “And, I have direct knowledge of the challenges that our schools and students face, as well as insight on what’s working well."
Beaty retired two years ago as the global strategies director for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. Beaty, whose children are grown, earned an economics degree from the University of Notre Dame and is married to a Fairfax County elementary school principal.
According to his campaign website, Beaty’s priorities include students’ mental health, academic achievement, supporting teachers, union recognition and collective bargaining for employees, addressing the bus driver shortage, and building bridges with the Latino Community.
"I would like to hear directly from students about their biggest safety concerns and what ideas they have to improve the school climate,” said Beaty, who is fluent in Spanish. It’s important to hear from students on this issue. And school board members need to be accountable to the people that elect them. I do think that school board members need to have the freedom to be able to get out and communicate with the voters that elected them."
Beaty will be sworn in next week to serve out the remainder of Bailey’s three-year term, which ends in January 2025. All nine school board seats – three each for Districts A, B and C -- are up for election Nov. 5.