ROCKINGHAM — Longtime educator Daryl Mason will soon take his seat on the Richmond County Board of Commissioners.
Board members unanimously appointed Mason to fill the vacant seat left by Jimmy Maske — who resigned in May citing health reasons — despite the recommendation of the Richmond County Democratic Party Executive Committee.
The committee had nominated Peggy Covington, who previously served a four-year term on the board and was a candidate for the board in 2012.
State law lets the party of the outgoing commissioner select a replacement, but the county board has the final decision.
Mason said commissioners approached him because they didn’t want someone who had been on the ballot.
“The people of Richmond County have accepted me, and I just want to give back what I can,” he said.
The Fort Myers, Florida native has worked with Richmond County Schools for the past 28 years.
Mason began his career as a health and physical education and physical science teacher.
In 2001, he made the move from classroom to administration to become the assistant principal at Rockingham Middle School. He later moved up to be principal of Leak Street High School.
He said his current job at Richmond Senior High equates to being dean of students.
Mason met his wife Teresa, a Rockingham native, while working in Richmond County.
He said the commissioner post is just temporary — and to get his feet wet — but has aspirations for public office once he retires.
“My future goal is to eventually run for school board,” he said.
While his passion is education, Mason said he wouldn’t rule out running for a seat on the county board down the road.
“If there’s a need,” he said, “I might put my hat in the race.”
The position will be up for grabs in November.
Reach reporter William R. Toler at 910-817-2675.