18-year-old 'unofficially' wins Forrest Co. election commissioner seat

18-year-old 'unofficially' wins Forrest Co. election commissioner seat
Tyler Wood. Source: WDAM

FORREST COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - In past years, elections have been an issue in Forrest County, one 18-year-old elected to office is looking to solve the issues.

Tyler Wood, 18, topped incumbent Charlie Phillips, for the District 1, Forrest County Election Commissioner post unofficially winning 54 percent of the vote, with a total of 2,659.

"People were talking about my age and how young I am, it's not about age, I never entered this race because of my age, age was the last thing on my mind, it just so happens I turned 18 when I was able to run," Wood said.

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Wood said one of his main goals is to resolve election issues, specifically geared to ballot boxes and voter rolls.

"I can guarantee not one single ballot box will be submitted late, I used to say I guarantee not one ballot box will be gone missing….no…. not one single ballot box will be submitted late," Wood said. "I will be purging the books; I will be hiring and training my own poll workers."

Wood turned 18 on Jan. 13, and qualified to run for the office in April. County officials were uncertain if he is actually the youngest, but they said he is certainly one of the youngest.

"To me it's not about age, it's about if you have the integrity, knowledge and the experience needed to do this job and I have had a little experience in this job and I'm ready for the fight and I'm ready to take on this job," Wood said. "My first day that I'm allowed in office I'm going to jump right in to it, learn all I can and get better each day."

Wood said one of the biggest assets to his campaign was to meet voters in his district and listen to their issues.

"I knew that I could make a better election commissioner, I knew that I could serve the people better than the current election commissioner," Wood said. "It feels great, I'm so blessed that the voters chose to have me as their next election commissioner and bring elections back to Forrest County District 1."

Absentee ballots have been counted and added to the total; however, affidavit ballot counting was not completed as of Wednesday evening.