Former alderwoman to fill vacant seat

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 2, 2010

FERRIDAY — Gail Pryor is back in a familiar seat with the Town of Ferriday.

Pryor will serve as District C alderwoman until an October special election to fill the seat left vacant by the death of Alderman Jerome Harris last week.

Pryor previously served as the district’s alderwoman from 1994–2000. Pryor was defeated in 2000 by Harris.

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Pryor was picked during a special meeting of the board of aldermen Monday. She was among five District C residents who expressed interest in the position.

“We are in a time of transition, and I feel my previous knowledge and experience will make that transition smoother,” Pryor said. “A smooth transition is what is best for Ferriday.

“I’m looking forward to working with the current administration to make Ferriday better.”

She was picked over Wanda Baker Smith, Zacki Fletcher Cummings, Georgia Anderson and the Rev. Wilbert Mason.

Pryor was selected by a 2-0 vote, with Alderwoman Gloria Lloyd abstaining. Aldermen Elijiah “Steppers” Banks and Johnny Brown voted in favor of Pryor’s appointment. Alderwoman Somer Lance was not in attendance.

Ferriday Mayor Glen McGlothin said anyone stepping into Harris’ position would have “big shoes to fill”

“You have to think like him,” McGlothin said during the meeting. “It wasn’t about him, and it isn’t about you. To Jerome serving was about the people.”

Pryor said she was a lifelong resident of District C and because of that familiarity, she doesn’t expect to have any problem stepping into her new position.

“I know the people; I know the district; I know the concerns,” she said.

The special election will be Oct. 2. A runoff, if needed, will be Nov. 2.

Pryor said she is considering running for the seat in a permanent capacity.

“The option for that is left open,” she said.

Monday’s appointment has to be certified by the Louisiana Secretary of State’s office, but McGlothin doesn’t expect there to be any issue.