DeKalb County CEO primary race heading to runoff

(From left to right: Commissioners Steve Bradshaw, Lorraine Cochran-Johnson, Larry Johnson)

Former Commissioner Lorraine Cochran-Johnson and Larry Johnson are headed towards a runoff in the race to replace DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond, who is restricted from running for another term.

No single candidate got 50% plus one vote to win outright on Tuesday. Cochran-Johnson pulled in 46% while Johnson garnered 34% of the vote. The two beat out Commissioner Steve Bradshaw, a Charlotte native who came to Georgia in 1977. 

Commissioner Bradshaw has represented District 4 since he took office in 2017. It covers Avondale Estates, Clarkston, Pine Lake, Memorial Drive and Stone Mountain. 

Both candidates will be on the runoff ballot on June 18.

LIVE RESULTS: Georgia 2024 primary election - All races

What does the DeKalb County CEO do?

According to Michael Thurmond, the job of the Chief Executive Officer involves "adopting a balanced budget, ensuring accurate water bills, removing blight, offering summer youth employment, improving employee compensation, and fulfilling the federal/state sewer consent agreement." 

Thurmond is retiring after eight years on the job. Prior to his role as Chief Executive Officer, Thurmond made history as the first African-American to be elected to the Georgia General Assembly from Clarke County since the Reconstruction era. He's held several other high-profile jobs, like superintendent of DeKalb schools, labor commissioner and author.

It wasn't immediately clear what is next for the soon-to-be retiree.

Who is Lorraine Cochran-Johnson?

Commissioner Lorraine Cochran-Johnson (Supplied)

Lorraine Cochran-Johnson, a Greenville, Alabama-native was voted onto the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners in 2018. She represented Super District 7, up until she decided to run for the CEO position.

Cochran-Johnson has a background in political science and criminal justice, economic development, entrepreneurship and visual media. She's made it her platform to focus on issues like the housing crisis, gun violence, youth empowerment and support for small businesses.

Learn more about Lorraine.

RELATED NEWS: DeKalb County Georgia 2024 primary election results

Who is Larry Johnson?

Commissioner Larry Johnson (D-Dist. 3) (Supplied)

Larry Johnson is a health-focused DeKalb County commissioner of 22 years who represents District 3.

He served as the communications director for the Association of Black Cardiologists and as the former manager for the Fulton County Department of Health & Wellness, where he began a program to help eliminate the racial and ethnic disparities in health.

Learn more about Larry.