Williams wins votes for County Commission District 4 seat
Published 9:34 pm Tuesday, April 12, 2016
By JESSA PEASE / Staff Writer
COLUMBIANA— Vineyard Family Services Director Ward Williams will serve in the District 4 seat of the Shelby County Commission after the April 12 runoff election.
With all but the provisional ballots tallied, Williams had earned about 52 percentof the citizen’s votes (about 481 votes), according to unofficial results.
Ward ran against former Thompson High School assistant principal and Alabaster resident, Ron Griggs.
“I want to thank everybody who voted today. Every vote counted,” Williams said in an interview following the election results. “I want to thank both Gene Rowley and Ron Griggs for their gentlemenship, both of them and their families. I loved personally meeting thousands of the District 4 residents, knocking on their doors and listening to what they have to say. I’m going to work really hard to be a good ambassador for them.”
Williams said he was grateful to his family, church family and the staff members at Vineyard Family Services for their support and help with the campaign.
“I am just extremely grateful,” he said.
During the primary election, Griggs and Williams ran for the position with Alabaster resident Rowley. The March 1 results revealed Griggs led the primary race with 1,508 votes (38.59 percent), followed by Williams with 1,262 votes (32.29 percent).
The District 4 seat includes portions of Pelham and Alabaster from Valleydale Road to Alabama 119 and along U.S. 31 and Interstate 65.
Williams campaigned on fostering collaboration between local nonprofits and those looking to help as well as working to tout Shelby County’s strengths. He said he would like to focus on the positives in the county, and not just what needs help.
For the past eight years, Williams has been leading VFS, which is the parent company of the Backpack Buddies program. Backpack Buddies works to provide out-of-school meals for children who otherwise would go hungry during the nights and weekends. Williams has seen the Backpack Buddies program grow from 40 kids several years ago to 700 kids today.
VFS, which is housed in the Servpro corporate office on Huntley Parkway in Pelham, also provides programs to promote responsible fatherhood, strong families and child wellbeing.
Williams previously coached soccer at Spain Park High School, has been a youth coach with the Alabaster YMCA, has served on the Children’s Policy Council, the Department of Human Resources Quality Assurance Council and more.
As of the night of April 12, Griggs had not returned any phone calls seeking comment on the results of the election.