Tay Anderson graduated from high school in May, turned 19 in July and finished out his campaign for the Denver school board with a loss on Tuesday. He told Colorado Matters it was his first major election but it won't be his last.
"It's OK because I'll be back. A 19-year-old was able to convince 4,000 people to vote for him."
Anderson finished third in a three-way race to represent northeast Denver. It was arguably the most competitive contest in the school board election and it resulted in an upset: Jennifer Bacon, who was backed by the teachers union, beat incumbent Rachele Espiritu, who supported Superintendent Tom Boasberg's package of reforms. Bacon's victory, along with teacher Carrie Olson's win over incumbent Michael Johnson, will shift the board from a 7-0 majority in favor of reform to a 5-2 split, still in the reformers' favor.
Anderson is a former president of the Manual High School student body. At one point during high school he was in foster care. He was endorsed by former Mayor Wellington Webb.