Mike Eason is celebrating with 50 of his closest friends and family at a victory party at the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame tonight.
Eason won the special election for the Mayor of Dawsonville with 61.51 percent of the vote on Tuesday.
Eason, who was appointed acting mayor in December, drew 195 votes while 120 were cast for former Mayor James Grogan.
The election results were read aloud at the Dawson County Board of Elections Office at 7:25 p.m.
Out of 1,920 registered city voters, 317 cast votes in the special election.
Early voting comprised of 188 votes; absentee voting comprised of 5 votes; voting day racked up 124 votes and there was one provisional ballot cast.
Eason, 67, will be sworn in April 9 and will serve out the remainder of the mayor term, through Dec. 31, 2019.
"I want to thank all the people that came out to vote, no matter how they voted, because that's important that people have a say so in Dawsonville as to how they want their government run," Eason said after the votes were tallied. "I feel like we ran a pretty clean campaign, no problems with both parties. I want to thank everybody that supported me...I was greeted in homes throughout the community, talked to people, was invited into houses, they wanted to know what I thought, what I wanted to do, what was going on in the city and what's happening."
Eason said he thinks there is great potential for the city under his leadership.
"I think we have a great opportunity in the next couple of years to make some real changes in our community to help it develop, not necessarily grow as much, but develop into a destination location," he said. "We've got a lot of things in process. At the council meeting last night we talked about a resolution on speeding, we're working with the board of education to lower the speed limits here in the city. We're doing things a lot more professionally...and we've got a lot of new policies in place and a lot more coming down the road."
Eason was formerly the City of Cumming police chief and Deputy State Inspector General. He worked as a special agent for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for over 30 years.
He has lived in Gold Creek since 2012.
Grogan, 75, was seeking to finish a term that he started on Jan. 1, 2016 that was cut short by a vote of city council last year.
He appealed the council's decision but was officially removed from the seat in October.
Grogan was outside the board of elections all day Tuesday with signs, waving to voters as they drove by.
"I got beat, I don't know what else to say. I ran as good a race as I could run," Grogan said. "I have had a lot of negatives against me every week in the news and it's hard to fight that, especially when you know you haven't done anything wrong. I'm ready to move on to something else now."