Election filings include familiar faces

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 1, 2019

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By Jim Buice
For the Clemmons Courier

Plenty of familiar names dominate the slate of candidates for November’s election in Clemmons while Bermuda Run and Lewisville are guaranteed to see some new faces when the votes are counted.

When the filing deadline ended in July, incumbent John Wait, a political newcomer who was elected mayor in 2017, had filed for re-election, and he will be opposed by Larry Kirby, the town’s longtime public works director who had retired earlier that year as village manager.

This time, Kirby, who waged a late and unsuccessful bid as a write-in candidate for mayor, officially got his name on the ballot after getting over 1,000 votes in the previous election.

Two positions are up for grabs on the council, and those who filed include Mary Cameron, who served six four-year terms and 24 consecutive years on the board before being swept out of office with two other incumbents in 2017 as a result of an overriding issue — voters sided with a group of challengers who campaigned against a median on Lewisville-Clemmons Road.

Mike Rogers, who also was voted out along with Cameron, has filed again along with Pamela (P.J.) Lofland, an anti-median candidate who won a two-year term two years ago.

Chris Wrights, who is completing a four-year term on the council, also has filed for re-election. Allen Daniel and Matt Moger round out the list of six candidates who are vying for three available positions.

Michelle Barson and Scott Binkley received four-year terms on the board as the two top vote-getters in the 2017 election.

Mike Combest, who landed a four-year term in 2015, decided not to seek re-election — sticking with his vow to serve four years and step aside with the goal of providing good service to the community and encouraging other residents to do the same.

“By stepping aside and clearing a path for others, I can help bring the new blood and new perspectives that are essential to good government,” he said. “I don’t discount the very role that experience plays in local government, but there will be plenty of that on this newly seated council. Likewise, both mayoral candidates will be experienced in city governance.

“Furthermore, experience shows that it’s easy to get longevity on the council — once folks get on, they want to stay on forever. And as we see at all levels of government, longevity and experience don’t always translate into expertise or wisdom.”

In Lewisville, while Mike Horn has filed again for re-election and is unopposed in the mayoral race, the council will have a new look with four current members on the board — Robert Greene, Sandra Mock, Ed Smith and Jeff Zenger — not running and thereby honoring one of the town’s charter provisions of not exceeding four consecutive two-year terms.

Also, Marci Gallman has chosen not to run again, so that leaves Fred Franklin as only current member of the board who has filed for re-election.

Along with Franklin, eight others have filed to run for the Council — Jeanne Foster, Melissa Hunt, Derek Roach, Ken Sadler, Brian Shumack, David Smitherman, Mike Sullivan and Jane Welch.

In Bermuda Run, Mayor Ken Rethmeier did not seek re-election, but current council member Rick Cross filed for the position and is running unopposed.

Incumbent John Guglielmi is running again for one of two seats on the council along with challengers Curtis Capps and Heather Coleman. Current councilman Jerry West decided not to seek re-election. The seats of council members Mike Ernst and Chris Fowler will expire in 2021.