CHEYENNE — Cindy Hill claimed the state’s top education job, while fellow Republican Secretary of State Max Maxfield won re-election Tuesday.
Hill defeated Democrat Mike Massie to claim the superintendent of public instruction post. Hill had 61 percent to 39 percent for Massie with 91 percent of precincts reporting. The former Cheyenne junior high school assistant principal easily beat incumbent Jim McBride in the GOP primary.
Hill takes over a department that has been criticized for problems in administering the statewide student assessment test and for low student testing results despite the state investing more than $1 billion in elementary and secondary education every two years.
The superintendent serves with other statewide elected officials on boards that make decisions on investments and state land issues.
Massie, an established state legislator from Laramie, wished Hill the best and said he was ready to leave politics after 16 years.
“I have no thoughts or anticipation of running for any other office again in the future,” he said.
In the secretary of state race, Republican incumbent Max Maxfield defeated little-known Democrat Andrew Simons of Laramie and Libertarian Candice De Laat of Gillette. Maxfield had 76 percent of the vote with 91 percent of precincts reporting.
Maxfield was state auditor for two terms before winning the secretary of state job in 2006.
Simons, a former submarine sailor and part-time pizza delivery man in Laramie, had little time or money to wage a campaign. De Laat was virtually unheard from.
The secretary of state is Wyoming’s second-highest officeholder and steps in should the governor become incapacitated. The office oversees everything from state elections to rules for corporations.
No Democrats ran for state auditor or treasurer this year. Republican Joe Meyer will serve a second term as state treasurer, and Republican Cynthia Cloud of Cody was the lone candidate for auditor. Cloud will replace Rita Meyer, who ran unsuccessfully in the Republican gubernatorial primary.
Voters also retained Supreme Court Justices Barton R. Voigt and Marilyn S. Kite.