Malinda Hodge wins race for Chatham Co. District 2 commissioner seat

Published: Oct. 17, 2023 at 10:52 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 17, 2023 at 11:11 PM EDT
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CHATHAM COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - There’s a new face heading to the Chatham County Commission.

Tuesday’s runoff election between Malinda Hodge and David Tootle stood as a run off election for the District 2 seat.

This race has been a long one, according to both candidates, as they have chased the District 2 seat ever since it was announced that there would be a special election.

However, after months and two election cycles, Malinda Hodge has secured her spot on the Chatham County Commission.

“It means more to me than I can express with them. Your words I am the daughter of the district I was born here in Savannah I’ve lived in the district my entire life I choose to live in Savannah. It’s my home by choice but it’s such an honor to be able to work in this capacity and just to be in to be able to deal with a governance with my own community. I feel so fortunate,” said Hodge.

This election claimed the open seat left by the late Larry “Gator” Rivers who passed in April. Since then, his wife has been stepping in in his absence until a new commissioner could be elected.

Since Rivers had not finished ¾ of his term a special election was required.

Hodge says that after this process, she is more than ready to jump out of campaign mode and begin her journey as a commissioner.

“I’m ready, I’m ready to hit the ground running to put in the work to learn what’s happening, what’s going on and where I can make a difference.”

And as her support system?

“GO MALINDA, team Malinda!”


As far as what is next for competitor David Tootle...

“We will see I’m gonna take a few weeks of rest and see how things go spend some time with my kids,” said Tootle.

In the face of defeat, Tootle says he is proud of what he and his team have done in this election.

“I think we were competitive in a very blue district. We raised our numbers from September, so I just think we are holding our heads. Hi, we are really looking at the glass half full.”

Although Hodge has more than 61% of the vote, remember, the board of elections still needs to certify these results.

Malinda Hodge is now gearing up to take her place as the District 2 Chatham County Commissioner.

To view the results, head to our Election Results page.