A “Vote Here” sign sits outside of Freeport High School on Tuesday, Nov. 2. C. Thacher Carter / The Times Record

Colin Cheney and Dung Nguyen won the two contested seats of the Regional School Unit 5 Board of Directors, according to results that were released Wednesday afternoon.

The two openings were sought after by four candidates in total. Cheney garnered 1,800 votes, Nguyen received 1,788, Jared Boudreau received 901 and Carie James received 999 votes.

Regional School Unit 5 serves the communities of Freeport, Pownal and Durham.

The two vacant seats were held by Jeremy Clough and Lindsey Furtney. Clough served two terms, and Furtney served a partial three-month term, and a full three-year term.

Regional School Unit 5 School Board elect Colin Cheney. Photo by Kyle Dubay

Cheney, 43, is a writer and educator who has lived in Freeport for about five years.

“I’m thrilled and honored that the folks in Freeport chose the two of us to be part of the board and I’m just looking forward to getting started,” Cheney said. “In general what I’ve been talking to folks about is the need to continue the good work that the board has been engaged in over the last few years, but particularly during the last 18 months during COVID when they’ve had to be quite nimble on their feet responding to the needs of the students and the needs of the teachers during the pandemic.”

Cheney added that he also hopes to continue work on diversity, equity and inclusion in all levels of Regional School Unit 5.

Nguyen, 60, moved to Freeport in April and works as a physician and scientist. He is originally from Saigon, Vietnam, and fled to the U.S. around 1975.

Regional School Unit 5 School Board elect Dung Nguyen. Courtesy of Dung Nguyen

“I am humbled that the voters of the school district have voted for me, I’m deeply humbled,” Nguyen said. “My platform is pretty simple: to focus on my strengths in mathematics, engineering and science curriculum.”

Nguyen said that he hopes to work with the board and school to possibly create a lecture series introducing advanced concepts set up in a way that students in K-12 can understand.

“I am just so excited of this tremendous opportunity to give back to the community and also to the United States, a country that gave me a second chance at life,” Nguyen added.

Both Nguyen and Cheney expressed support for the current indoor mask mandate in RSU 5 schools in previous interviews.

According to Freeport Town Clerk Christine Wolfe, the results were delayed due to a technical problem with voting machine programming. The issue was resolved and the counting of votes was completed on Wednesday morning.

Terms on the Regional School Unit 5 Board of Directors are for three years. There were 28 write-in votes, and 1,768 blanks.

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