KAUFMAN, TEXAS — Republican runoff voters made history at the polls today, electing the first Black man to ever serve the 422nd District Court bench in Kaufman county.
After an overwhelming victory in early voting, Shelton Gibbs IV, went on to secure 4,031 or 61% of the votes to be elected district court judge, beating challenger Chad Johnson’s 2,528 votes.
“I am honored and privileged to take the bench and provide the Christian conservative leadership that our county needs at this time. This campaign was never about me, it’s about us. It's always about the citizens of Kaufman county and our future," Gibbs tells inForney.com exclusively from his victory celebration Tuesday night.
Gibbs is a 13-year veteran of the Kaufman county district attorney’s office. A Terrell High School, Southwestern Christian College, Abilene Christian University and SMU's Dedman law school graduate; Gibbs has spent the majority of his professional career working in Kaufman county as a felony prosecutor. Aside from his duties at the courthouse, he is a Church of Christ minister and a local sports youth coach.
Gibbs won handily following a long grassroots fundraising and digital campaign, including the endorsement of Academy Award winning actor Jamie Foxx, Republican congressman Lance Gooden of Terrell and Kaufman County District Attorney Erleigh Wiley among a host of others. Johnson was endorsed by assistant city attorney for the City of Terrell, Greg Shumpert, and former members of the recently disbanded Kaufman county TEA party and GOP Club.
Gibbs will not face a democrat challenger in November. He will be sworn in as judge January 1, 2021 after the retirement of current district Judge Mike Chitty who announced he would not run for reelection last Fall.
4,857 voters took advantage of early voting according to Kaufman county elections officials. 3,617 Republicans cast ballots to 1,240 Democrats.
All elections results remain unofficial until they are approved by county commissioners. Results in this article reflect ballot counts issued at press time.