Local Election Guide | April 2022

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The Greeneville Sun

Overview of the Candidates Political Issues on The Agenda

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Two Candidates Running For Greene County Mayor BY SPENCER MORRELL

over the last four years, and to continue to ensure that Greene County remains the greatest place in the world for Two candidates are life, work, and play. running in the Republican What do see as the Primary for Greene County biggest challenge or opMayor, incumbent Mayor Kevin Morrison and chalportunity facing Greene lenger Terry Greer. County in the next four There is no Democratic Priyears, and how will you approach it as county mary for the mayor seat, so mayor? either Morrison or Greer will Morrison: The biggest run unopposed in the August challenge facing Greene General Election. County I believe in the very The Greeneville Sun asked Kevin Morrison near term is to carefully candidates to respond to navigate the fickle economy questionnaires about their sioned as an infantry officer campaigns. into the United States Army, that has developed. Despite our blessed ability to have Terry Greer did not rewhere he became an Airspond to the Sun’s question- borne Ranger and completed recently capitalized on many opportunities with excepnaire. The Sun made multiple numerous combat schools and earned numerous skill attempts to contact Greer. tional financial managebadges, awards and decoraEarly voting begins April ment, (The partnership and 13 and runs through April tions for service and pertrust that has been built 28. The Republican Party formance. His assignments between the Greene County primary will be held May 3 included the Korean DMZ, Commission and all of our and the general election will Panama, the 101st Airborne department heads, elected be Aug. 4. at Fort Campbell, Kentucky officials, and leaders have and the 3rd Infantry Division made all the difference in at Fort Benning, Georgia. He having and maintaining the Morrison was recruited out of the Army best and strongest financial by a fortune 500 company in position in Greene County Morrison, 53, was first the spring of 1997 to become history). Despite this strong elected in Greene County a pharmaceutical sales position, it must be nurtured mayor in August 2018. representative in Ann Arbor, and preserved, and with the He was born and raised in Michigan, at the University of tremendous inflationary Greene County. He is a 1987 Michigan. He was promoted pressures we have seen, the graduate of North Greene and returned home in 1999 most pressing challenge is High School, and earned a where he continued his for local government not Bachelor of Science degree sales career. He spent 20 to misstep, financially, and from East Tennessee State years working for numerous add to those burdens or University in 1991. He and pharmaceutical and bio tech pressures. Our short term his wife of 26 years, Stephcompanies until his election plan is to provide steady, anie Braithwaite, have four in 2018. conservative stewardship of children. They live in the Why are you running our budget and tax dollars. Newmansville and Union for this office? We have consistently and Temple communities on Morrison: It has been carefully evaluated how each their family’s farm. Morrison the honor of my life to serve decision or commitment may is a member of the Union as County Mayor, and other affect our county now and in Temple United Methodist than my wife, kids, and fam- the future. We want to make Church where he was a lay smart decisions and wise inspeaker and now serves as a ily, serving Greene County lay minister in the Baileyton is the absolute love of my vestments that pay dividends Circuit of the United Methlife. I am seeking reelection in the future. Other than that, odist Church. While at ETSU, to this office to continue to We have implemented and build on the responsible he completed the ROTC very quickly capitalized on advancements we have made the tremendous opportuniprogram and was commisSTAFF WRITER

ties we have been presented. Most especially, 1) Broadband internet delivery across the County. This endeavor is so important for making Greene County competitive for jobs and industry, and education delivery. Affordable and abundant broadband across Greene County would have changed completely the effects of COVID-19 on education delivery and learning. 2) Capitalize and continue economic development opportunities. Business, industry, restaurant, and retail recruitment. These initiatives are very competitive, complicated and require time and focus, and we need have taken an aggressive approach to maximize available incentives for businesses looking for a permanent home and looking to expand. We also want to diversify our economy with many different areas, so that our employment has less volatility to be adversely affected when times get hard. 3) Workforce development. Maximize our community’s educational and workforce training opportunities and continue to push for more opportunities for students or adults desiring to start a business, or be trained in the specialty trade/service industry. The efforts by many of our leaders including myself to get TCAT (TN College of Applied Tech), in Greene County is a great step toward being a better prepared community for the future. Other initiatives include: CTE (Career and Technical Education), in our schools. Partnerships with Walters State Community College like the Law Enforcement Academy, and Tusculum University’s and ETSU’s many program offerings along with their

traditional degree offerings. What do you see as the role of the Greene County Mayor in recruiting new businesses and employers to Greene County in the coming years? Is having county owned and developed property available vital to business recruitment? Why or why not? Morrison: The county mayor contributes in partnership with other community leaders to the overall direction and vision of Greene County’s efforts to the recruitment of business, industry, restaurants, and retail. There is also a role for resource management, acquisition, and advocacy. The rules have drastically changed over the years to give greater involvement, financial incentives, and additional financial tools to local municipalities/ counties/jurisdictions that were not available in the past. These rules and incentives have been set up by the State of Tennessee to make our state, counties, and cities more competitive for winning jobs, business, industry, and other commerce. These incentives are not available to private property/business owners. Rightly or wrongly, these are the rules of the game, and we can choose as a community to compete or be left out, or receive what is left over, if anything. In this age of instant communication and competitiveness, having county owned/developed property is a must. County/ municipal owned property unlocks the potential for receiving development grants from the state to assist with costly grading, infrastructure, marketing/advertisement, and preliminary/spec

construction. Not having county/municipal owned property means these costs fall on the tax payers and puts our community at extreme disadvantage in comparison to others around us. Bottom line? Opportunities presented to us are not going away. They will simply go somewhere else, and we miss out on all the benefits of getting others to help us pay our bills. We have no desire to be in the real estate business. We want to compete and win against other communities following the same rules of the game, and with Greene County’s quality of life and natural beauty, by taking advantage of the economic incentives available to us, we can win against them!

A brief additional statement, if desired. Morrison: First, I thank you for the honor and opportunity to serve as your county mayor the last four years. Whether you voted for me or not, I have worked greatly to demonstrate that I can be the leader that honors your trust, vote, and support to successfully lead our community. Over the last four years, I have not let up on getting to know, helping, and meeting as many of you, my neighbors, as I can. However, it is impossible to meet everyone, and I want to take this opportunity to personally ask, if I have not had that opportunity, for your vote and support for reelection as your county mayor, so that we can carry on the very important work that we have started, to make Greene County the best place in the world to live, work, and play. God bless and thank you.

2 Running For Greene County Sheriff BY KEN LITTLE

and give them the wages and support they need to do their jobs effectively. Two candidates will vie Crime reduction goes for Greene County sheriff hand-in-hand with our in the May 3 Republican drug problem. Drug abuse Primary. and addiction are not new Incumbent Sheriff Wesproblems. Problems such as these have been around ley Holt is challenged by since Adam and Eve met Blake “Andy” Barham. evil in the Garden of Eden. The candidates recently To reduce crime means responded to questions we need to support each from The Greeneville Sun other and look out for our about their campaigns. {div class=”subscribneighbors. We continue to Wesley Holt Blake “Andy” Barham use many programs in the er-only”}Early voting jail to help with issues such will be beside my officers begin on April 13 and runs citizens and these issues. as addiction. Faith-based day in and day out. I will through April 28. The What in your backprograms are the key to Republican Party primary ground and experience hold people accountable success as we have seen in will be held on May 3. The would you most like for and protect this county by many cases. Greene Counall means. A great man, primary winner will run the voters to consider Ronald Reagan, once said: unopposed in the general when they choose a ty’s Recovery Court has “We must reject the idea election is Aug. 4. sheriff?{/div} seen many success stories. Why are you running Holt: I started out work- that every time a law’s I once heard Sessions Court broken, society is guilty for this office? ing in the jail in 1989 and Judge Kenneth Bailey rather than the lawbreakHolt: Greene County is worked there until 1993. tell one participant that my home and I enjoy serv- During my term in the jail er. It is time to restore the setbacks will happen but it I was promoted to sergeant American precept that each is what you do during those ing the citizens of Greene and facility training officer. individual is accountable County. I want to make times that will make you Greene County a safe place In summer of 1993 I took for his actions.” I will hold stronger. a road patrol position and to live, work, and raise a everyone accountable. At Barham: We have to completed the Tennessee family. I have dedicated the end of the day I live by concentrate on building my life of service to Greene Law Enforcement Offithree things: 1. Do the right better relationships within County with 32 years with thing. 2. Do your best each the community, the use cers Training Academy. I the sheriff’s department day 3. Treat others as you of better technologies, continued to rise through and the last three and strategies for predicthe ranks during my patrol want to be treated. a half years as sheriff. I What do you see as years to sergeant and then tive policing, and better have served in corrections, to lieutenant. I gained valu- priorities for law enpreparing for civil unrest. patrol, and administration able leadership experience forcement in terms of First, we reduce the crime during these years and during these years. In 2014 public protection over rate by taking advantage have gained leadership I was promoted to adminthe next four years? of technology and better skills to do the job effiistrative captain at the How would you reduce training so we can prepare department which oversaw crime? ciently. I want to mainfor trends that other surmultiple divisions. I was Holt: The number one tain our jail certification, rounding cities have seen provide for our officers, and elected sheriff in 2018. My priority of law enforcement and hopefully stay ahead of 32 years of experience sets in terms of public proteccontinue to live within my the curve. Second, we stay me apart from any other budget without a burden tion should be our children proactive and work togethcandidate. Leadership is to our taxpayers. During and citizens. I want them er with state and federal developed over years of ex- to feel safe in their commu- prosecutors for more strinmy term as sheriff, I have worked within my budget perience. I have gained that nities and homes. During gent sentencing. We have and not asked for increases knowledge and experience my term as sheriff, I put 17 seen a trend of releasing or that would cause taxes to by devoting my years of School Resource Officers reducing sentencing that be raised. service to Greene County. into our schools that are has led to a reduced fear of Barham: Law enforceIn addition, I have made trained to teach the LEAD punishment after commitprogram (Law Enforcement ting a crime. Last, we better ment has been a calling and it a priority to volunteer Against Drugs & Violence). educate the citizens of our way of life for me from Day and serve our commuThe Greene County Sher1. It’s a career I’m passion- nity for over 35 years in community to reduce their ate about and I don’t see it roles such as a volunteer iff’s Department is the only likelihood of becoming a as just a job. My diversified firefighter, a dispatcher at law enforcement agency in victim of a crime. Greene County 911, and a experience in different Tennessee that has all of What are the most efvolunteer with the Greenareas of law enforcement our SROs trained in this fective means as sheriff have exposed me to the eville Emergency & Rescue K-12 program. Another of addressing methamevils that surround our Squad. These roles have led priority is the department. phetamine and opioid community and I know to the experience needed to The Sheriff’s Department’s distribution and use in what’s just down the road! be a leader. I have proven employees are the greatest Greene County? I’ve decided to make a during my term as sheriff asset. However, we are Holt: Our 3rd Judistand and draw the line that I have the background seeing a decline in citizens cial District Drug Task for the citizens of Greene and experience to continue seeking law enforcement Force works alongside the County. If you take a look to lead the Greene County careers. The media has District Attorney Generaround you will see a grow- Sheriffs Department. portrayed law enforcement al’s Office to address these Barham: I’m a working in a bad light and it is ing homeless issue, a vast problems. In addition, they starting to catch up with us work with our federal partdrug problem, people chal- man with 24 years of diverse experience in county, here in Tennessee and even ners to combat our drug lenging our civil liberties, locally. Therefore, we have problem. These Drug Task municipal, and corporate and our way of life. I take to take care of our greatoffense to all of these and I policing. I plan on being Force agents work hard a working sheriff, and plan to stand between our est asset, our employees, every day taking drugs off STAFF WRITER

our streets. I have added a uniformed officer to the Drug Task Force to work on complaints received by our office of illegal drug activity in neighborhoods. I would like to add more officers to our Drug Task Force. Our patrol officers are averaging three to four drug arrest in a twelve-hour shift. Adding more officers to the Task Force will hopefully help us create our own Drug Task Force for our county. Drugs and crime are directly related. Drug users commit crimes to support their habits. We have several drug rehabilitation programs in our jail to hopefully stem the tide of drug use. It takes everyone working together from counselors, clergy, and families to overcome this epidemic. This drug epidemic did not start overnight and it will not end overnight. I added the LEAD program to our county schools because we have to educate our children on the effects of drugs and alcohol along with decision making and consequences. Barham: The war on drugs has been ongoing for decades. In my opinion the war doesn’t change. The tactics and terrain changes, not the war, and I say we punch it in the mouth! We have to take it head on and aggressively to be effective. Also I have found that the more training each individual deputy receives related to combating drugs the more our community will benefit. Law enforcement cannot rely on narcotics divisions alone to solve this problem. It takes the entire department. To be productive in this effort, Greene County deserves a sheriff who has the experience and knows how to proactively plan/assist in narcotics operations with supervisors and officers. We can also combat drugs through community-awareness and citizen cooperation. If we truly want to solve the issue, we have to help find the root of a person’s addiction through an intense faith-based recovery program. Next we give each person life skills and job skills training to aid in the process of recovery and to help them down the correct

road in life. If we invest in the human being, we are ultimately able to take the user away from the dealer. A brief additional statement, if desired Holt: For the last three and a half years I have shown the citizens of Greene County that I am qualified and have the experience to run the sheriff’s office. I wish to continue to serve you, the citizens, as your Greene County Sheriff. I also wish to continue to lead the officers of the department. I will continue to work hard for you, just as I have for the past 32 years in this department. I have dedicated over 35 years of service to volunteering in my community. I am proud to call Greene County my home and want to see our county thrive and prosper. I want to make our citizens and officers proud as the elected leader of the Greene County Sheriff’s Department. I humbly ask for your vote and support as I seek reelection in the May 3 Primary. Barham: I am honored to be running for Greene County Sheriff in the town in which I grew up. Law enforcement is in my blood, having grown up at the police station with my father, Kenneth “Red” Barham, who served as an officer for the city and around my brother and various other members of my family who stand with our brothers in blue. If given the opportunity, I would love to be the change that this county needs in dealing with issues like our drug addiction issues and theft. If you are not happy with the status quo and you feel as if more needs to be done to address these issues, I encourage you to reach out and talk with me. I have children growing up in this community and I would love the opportunity to use my diversified experience to help ensure this county is one in which they can safely grow up and prosper as productive citizens. Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions you may have and you will find that I am responsive and eager to assist. My family and I humbly ask for your vote on May 3rd. Thank you and God Bless.

Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE



Early Voting For May Primary Is April 13-28 The early voting period for the May 3 County Primary Election is April 13-28. Early voting will be held at the Greene County Election Commission Office, 311 CCU Blvd., Suite 1. Early voting hours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are 8:30 a.m.4:30 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays 8:30 a.m.–

5:30 p.m., and Saturdays 8:30 a.m.–noon. The Greene County Election Commission Office and early voting will be closed April 15 in observance of Good Friday. Voters who choose to vote on Election Day will cast their ballot at their designated polling locations. Polling hours on May 3

are 9 a.m.–8 p.m. Those voting in person during early voting or on Election Day, must have a Federal or State of Tennessee Government issued photo ID as a photo ID is required for voting under Tennessee law, unless an exception applies. To learn more about this law and its exceptions, voters can visit www.GoVoteTN.gov or

contact the Greene County Election Commission Office by calling 423-7981715. The last day to receive a request for voters who wish to vote absentee by mail is April 26. For more information on absentee by mail eligibility, voters can visit www.GoVoteTN. gov or contact the Greene County Election Commis-

sion Office. The Greene County Election Commission also encourages voters to download the GoVoteTN app, which provides a way for voters to find their Election Day polling locations, view and mark sample ballots, see their elected officials, districts, and county election commission information.

Voters can download the free app in the App Store or Google Play. Staff members at the Greene County Election Commission Office are available to assist the public 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The office is located at 311 CCU Blvd., Suite 1. The public may reach the office by phone at 423-798-1715.

2 Running For Greene County Circuit Court Clerk benefit the court system here in Greene County, saving tax dollars. I’m still eager to research new ways courts are doing business all across Tennessee, and then see if any of those practices would benefit the tax payers here in Greene County. I still have the desire to get our community involved with the court system. Teach our children about the court system before they end up on the wrong side of it. How to Chris Shepard make the office more efficient — We are beginning to lead even partnered with the federal court system, holding the way for courthouses around us as to how courthearings for federal inmates held at the detention Center. houses do business with the It has become an important public. Offering services such tool in our bag of services as such as e-filing, video conwe offer to all parties that ferencing, online payments, have business at the Greene and online docket and court County Courthouse that information. These options keep them safe, and dockets help the court system move moving along efficiently. along like it should, without Collins: The citizens resetting multiple cases for deserve to have a leader who multiple reasons. Offering can lead by example with new services by the Circuit compassion and transparen- Court Clerk’s Office such as a cy. If I am elected I will bring driving school conducted by the Circuit Court Clerk’s Ofthose qualities along with fice. Court Clerks in middle over 20 years of experience and knowledge to the citizens and west Tennessee provide this service. I’ve inquired of Greene County to ensure they receive top notch service about this to the appropriate parties, and we could have when they come to the Cirthis in place by summer. It’s cuit Court Clerks’ office. a revenue generator we need How would you make to tap into. I would teach the office more efficient given available resources? the class, as most clerks do. Shepard: I still have that This is for no monetary gain personally of course, but drive to research and write just another way the Clerk’s grants to fund projects that

BY KEN LITTLE STAFF WRITER Two candidates will vie for Greene County Circuit Court Clerk position in the May 3 Republican Primary. Incumbent Circuit Court Clerk Chris Shepard and Chief Deputy Circuit Court Clerk Whitney Shelton Collins are both experienced public servants. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begin on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3. The primary winner will run unopposed in the general election Aug. 4. Why are you running for this office? Shepard: I’m running for this office again because we still have work to do. We have been very fortunate in the way we have moved this office forward the last four years. We were able to secure a couple grants that have proved invaluable with Covid concerns on the forefront. Video arraignment systems have been installed with that grant money. Now, our Sessions and Circuit courtrooms, the Greene County Detention Center, and the Detention Center’s satellite holding/processing facility, the Workhouse, all have

Whitney Shelton Collins

video conferencing capabilities. This improves the safety of all individuals involved, by not having to bring inmates to the courtroom for arraignment. Or transporting them back and forth from court to workhouse. Each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, it was not uncommon for 2030 individuals to be brought up from the jail to the court room for their initial hearing. Now, no inmates are brought up. The Judge arraigns them all thru the video system unless the judge says otherwise. When Covid-19 came about, the court system didn’t stop, and safety for exposure to the virus was top priority. The video arraignment system allowed individuals to be kept apart for hearings. Circuit Judges could conduct civil matters from their office or home. Criminal Judges conducted plea hearings among others. We have

Office can contribute to the general fund outside of the normal avenues of revenue. I have spoken with a couple of circuit judges about starting an adult Recovery Court here in Greene County. They were both excited about this possibility, and I have no doubt this program will be in place sooner than later with a little work. We currently have a general sessions Recovery Court, but there is currently no option for felony offenders here in Greene County. I served on the general sessions Recovery Court team for eight years. It’s time we extend that option to felony offenders. Drug use is the number one cause of incarceration in Greene County. How do you make courts more efficient, one way is to use every resource available to help folks overcome addictions that keep landing them in jail. Many individuals can have certain charges expunged, or erased from your record and don’t realize it. Expungement clinics set up with help from the Greeneville Bar and judges can help people remove these charges for good, and hopefully open up more employment opportunities. Collins: Technology is great, however technology is for computers. Compassion is for the people. The Circuit Court Clerk’s office is bound by the T. C. A.

which are the laws that tell us what to do with every filing and penny that we collect. However, with my experience and knowledge I can promise that the office will be led by example and guarantee that the employees will be properly trained and able to be as efficient as possible within its means and the citizens of Greene County will receive respect, compassion and transparency when they walk in the door. State some of your strengths in leading the Circuit Court Clerk’s office. Shepard: I was a firefighter for 19 years with the City of Greeneville. I worked at Doughty Stevens Funeral Home for 10 years. I was a Sheriff’s deputy with Greene County for 13 years. I was also a lifeguard right out of high school. I think all of those careers were preparing me to be the Circuit Court Clerk. Those jobs taught me how to solve problems, so that all parties benefit from the solution. I learned and felt compassion and empathy on a stronger level, helping folks that sometimes just needed someone to listen to them. Working in the Public Education division of the fire department taught me how to interact with the public SEE CLERK ON PAGE 4

V O T E May 3 Primary • Early Voting Apr. 13 - 26 Endorsed by neighboring Sheriffs “Sheriff Holt has proven

“I respect and endorse Sheriff

to me to be an honest man

Wesley Holt for re-election…

with integrity and I sincerely hope the citizens of Greene County realize the qualities that your sheriff maintains.”

He has proven himself to be a great leader and man of his word.”

- Sheriff Mike Hensley

- Sheriff Armando Fontes

Unicoi County

Cocke County

“I have known Sheriff Holt

“I have known Sheriff Holt for several years in our law enforcement career. I believe Sheriff Holt has done a fantastic job in forming the best law enforcement team to represent your county.” - Sheriff Jeff Cassidy Sullivan County

for many years…[he] is an outstanding Christian man who



character and judgment.” - Sheriff Ronnie Lawson Hawkins County

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3 Run For County Clerk In Republican Primary BY SPENCER MORRELL

the County Commission minutes for each County Commission meeting, help my Chief Deputy Clerk with Three Republicans are bookkeeping in busy time, running for the office of and help with the end of Greene County Clerk. month closeout to balance The winner of the Rereports and reconcile the publican primary will run bank statement. I want to unopposed in the Aug. 4 continue to be innovative General Election. and bring new services to Those running for the the Clerk’s Office. One of seat are incumbent Lori which would be a drive-thBryant, Kallie Lister, and Andrew James Anderson. ru window for “renewal The candidates recently registrations only” at the Kallie Lister Lori Bryant Andrew James Anderson responded to questions future new location at from The Greeneville Sun credit cards, and signature Office! I started working in and keeping minutes of the Takoma Building if about their campaigns. loans. During this time the Greene County Clerk’s the county legislative body approved. Through my Early voting begins on he also serviced financial Office in February 1984 meetings. The county clerk vision, I have installed a April 13 and runs through needs such as tax prep, for County Clerk Freddie also serves as the secretary new vehicle registration kiApril 28. The Republican originating mortgage loans, Shaw. I will always been to the beverage board. If osk, gotten new up-to-date Party primary will be held collections, and accountthankful to him for giving elected, my primary focus scanners for faster service, on May 3 and the general me this career opportunity. as County Clerk will always partnered with the Departing. These duties required election will be Aug. 4. As I look back on those be customer service. What him to be entrusted with ment of Safety and Homecan I do to make the sersensitive information, large 38 years, I have grown land Security Driver’s with knowledge of Greene sums of money, and risk vices at the County Clerk’s License Services to renew LISTER County in Local and State management. Vehicle title Office better for the people, driver’s licenses, provide Government. I have made paperwork, ownership Kallie Lister, 39, was its customers? I know most handgun permit renewal a lot of friends that I will transfers, and detailed born and raised in Greene of the staff, personally, and Real ID services for treasure for a lifetime. record keeping were all County. Her parents are after working with them; licenses. I also assist busiAnderson: I am deeply standard in other various Jack and the late Ginger they are committed and ness owners in filing their concerned we are allowing work extremely hard. They Standard Business License positions held by AnderShaw Lister. She is the a centralized federal power do a great job and are dogranddaughter of the son: service rep, assistant electronically through the late and former Greene manager, branch manager, to subdue this government ing the best they can with Department of Revenue of, for, and by our people. County Clerk of 28 years and senior loan officer. the tools and resources TNTAP website when their Other parts of this nation Freddie Shaw, Louise Though he never pursued they have available. One gross sales exceed $9,999. Shaw, and the late Jack, the career, he also obtained are much further into this important focus I would Anderson: A few things Sr. and Georgia Lister. property, casualty, and life erosion of governmental have as County Clerk would come to mind. Transparent standards, and I believe the be to provide the employAfter graduating from insurance licenses. He has and detailed record keeping damage is evident. Because ees with everything they Greeneville High School been married to his wife, of governmental affairs for I am aware of both modwith honors, she earned a Shelley, for 18 years and public consumption. Proneed to do their jobs. The business degree from East they have a 16-year-old ern and ancient history staff needs some flexibilviding prompt and efficient Tennessee State University. daughter. concerning the successes ity that gives them time services to the private busiShe began working in retail Why are you running and plights of nations, I off, when needed without nesses and individuals who management. She manfor this office? do not believe it wise to understaffing the office. I pay the clerk and staff to do Lister: The Greene aged 35 associates and $5 ignore the consented laws want provide, within the so. Uphold all laws and regCounty Clerk’s Office has million of inventory. She of the people of Tennessee; budget, more staff during ulations concerned without then worked at the Greene been a part of my family attempting to appease such lunch breaks and peak pebias or partiality. Negotiate County Clerk’s Office for six my entire life. My Papaw, aforementioned threats riods of demand. This will and work within the allotted Freddie Shaw, served seven against our Constitutional years and said she is fully cut down on the line. I plan office budget to ensure all trained in all services of the terms as the Greene County Republic. My birthright is to stay open on Saturdays required responsibilities are Clerk’s Office. She resigned Court Clerk, which later American, and as a native for those that cannot get met while diligently pursue became the Greene County son of this community, I last year to start her own into the office Monday-Fri- ways to minimize costs to Clerk. My Aunt Helen business, Keepsakes by feel it is our duty to reject day, 8-5. Saturdays allow the community. (Johnson) worked there Kallie. She also teaches these encroachments if time for them to take care What in your experiand my mom worked in the we are to maintain our a weekly Bible study to business. This would all be ence has prepared you office, part time, while she a group of ladies in their stability and freedom as accomplished by minito work in close associwas in college. I remember, a community. Stand for teens and 20s. mizing overtime, meeting ation with the County as a child, dreaming about the principles that have the budget, and providing Commission and other running for the County provided the foundation of appropriate work-life balcounty offices? BRYANT Clerk’s Office because of the greatest liberty within ance for the staff. I plan to Lister: My experience as how much I looked up to civil governance the world Lori Bryant, 58, is a continue providing services a retail manager and as a my Papaw. I love Greene has ever known. Restore graduate of South Greene like renewing driver’s deputy clerk in the County County and I love the them right here at home. High School and attended licenses, the kiosk, and the Clerk’s Office has taught County Clerk’s Office. The Every elected official plays the Greeneville Center mobile service. Each of me skills necessary to work office will always hold a a vital role in the checks of Technology for Office these services add value to with the County Commisspecial place in my heart. and balances of governEducation. She worked the office and customers, sion and other offices in It is part of my heritage. in the Clerk’s Office from but I see opportunities to mental entities. Simply County Government. I have Am I entitled to the office? stated, I desire to represent improve their value and 1984-2007. From 2007exceptional organizational Absolutely not. No one is. I and serve the people of this efficiency. A drive thru 2014 she worked in the and communication skills. Greene County Budget and am running for the office as community with competen- service has been discussed I work well with others and a citizen of Greene County Finance Department in and debated for years. I cy, efficiency, and transtreat people with dignity that has dreamt of doing so parency while maintaining am looking into ways of Accounts Payable where and respect, even when since I was a little girl. she gained knowledge of making a drive thru service our opinions or objectives the oath to the US and TN Bryant: I am seeking my Constitutions. the budget process for the work and I am in favor of differ. I have the capability 3rd Term as the incumbent county. She has served as the service. I would work What do you believe to focus on the task at hand County Clerk Candidate. the Greene County Clerk are the most important to make it a successful and and minimize conflict. I since being elected in 2014. My campaign platform is convenient resource for the treat people the way I want tasks that the county my 38 years of work expeIn 2006, Bryant’s campeople of Greene County. clerk performs? to be treated. Bryant: Maintaining paign efforts for the Greene rience. Experience Matters. Lister: The most Bryant: A total of 38 the utmost integrity in the County Clerk’s office were I would like to continue my important tasks of the years’ work and service exGreene County Clerk’s Ofunsuccessful, but in 2014 county clerk is to assure vision to pursue seeking perience as a Greene Counher bid for the office was the functions of the office out and implementing fice, being responsible with ty government employee successful. She was reelect- deserving new innovative are conducted professionthe Greene County citizens’ (23 years on the County customer services. I will ed to the office in 2018. ally, efficiently, and with tax dollars as your Greene Clerk Staff, seven years on always be working for She attends Cedar Creek superior customer service. County Clerk. To continue the Greene County Budget Greene County – ensuring Church of God. The functions include, but providing customer service and Finance Department) leadership supported by are not limited to: Busiby a caring, dedicated and – the most important is the 38 years’ experience in customer-friendly County ness Licenses, Marriage last eight years of leadANDERSON Greene County government Licenses, Notary Republics, Clerk staff. Maintaining ership serving all Greene is working for you and to Andrew “Drew” James accurate fiscal records Occupancy Tax, Vehicle County as Greene County provide fiscal progress with Registration and LicensAnderson, 39, has been in and providing dedicated Clerk! Having worked on the trade of pressman over the County Clerk budget. I support services to the ing, and Driver’s License the County Clerk staff for will prepare for changing the last eight years. PreGreene County Legislative Renewal/Replacement. 23 years enabled me to times. Being hands on and The clerk also serves are viously, he had a 10-year Body. I am your County successfully campaign in career in consumer finance having an experienced and the clerk of the county Clerk who will work just 2014. Serving as Greene proven voice, I will conwhere he worked in setlike my employees do. I legislative body. The clerk County Clerk required tings with the public such provide customer service tinually focus on a better is responsible for sending leadership with integrity as underwriting auto loans, Greene County Clerk’s at the window, prepare required public notices and a focus on the many

record-keeping demands and fiscal responsibilities in the Clerk’s Office. Many of these responsibilities are: keeping the minutes of the Legislative Body meetings, sending required public notices, performing the secretarial duties for the beverage board, keeping records of the Notary Public in Greene County, collecting/recording the Hotel and Motel operators remittance of occupancy taxes, reporting State transactions and scanning for transmittal approved State records. Anderson: It is my opinion that my background has prepared me to work closely with commissioners to keep accurate, detailed, and efficient records. I have experience with budgeting profit and loss and most importantly have a desire to work with the commission to ensure transparent governance and good stewardship paid for, and expected by, this community. A brief additional statement, if desired Lister: I have a passion for Greene County and the Greene County Clerk’s Office. After working there, I know that I have what it takes to run the office professionally, effectively and efficiently. My family are lifelong Greene Countians. I have been blessed with strong roots and a great of admiration of our county, my home. I want to give back through service to my community and I hope to do so through the Office of the Greene County Clerk. Bryant: During my first term as Greene County Clerk, I earned the designation as a Certified Public Administrator as recognition for completing the County Officials Certificate Training Program through the University of Tennessee County Technical Institute for Public Service through the County Technical Assistance Service in 2015. I also graduated from the University of Tennessee Institute of Public Service Local Government Leadership Program in December of 2016. During the past eight years serving as Greene County Clerk and as I seek every Greene County citizens’ support and vote for reelection for another 4 years, I, Lori Bryant, want each citizen to remember that the promises made in 2014 have been kept and the new promises are focused on my vision and to prepare for changing times that will ensure the Greene County Clerk’s office provides all citizens and office of integrity and the best customer-friendly service deserved! I am Lori Bryant, I am seeking my 3rd term as your incumbent Greene County Clerk. I ask for your vote and support and your prayers in the May 3rd Primary. Anderson: Anderson did not provide an additional statement.


been compromised, and have had to pay “ransoms” to hackers just to gain access to their software again. I understand how those things work, and what needs to be done to help mitigate all cyber threats. I don’t see myself as someone that will stay in this position term after term if given the opportunity. My tenure will end when I begin to feel that I am no longer making a difference. I’m proud of the work I am doing here at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office, and I would be honored and excited to continue expanding on the good things we have going on, and the exciting new services that are on the horizon for the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office. Collins: I can only make promises on what I can deliver to the citizens of Greene County, due to the laws that bind our office, I can only promise the citizens that they will receive top notch service, the utmost respect and compassion. I can also promise the citizens that the office will be led by example and with transparency.



and network with resources, and how important being transparent is when dealing with the public. I am tasked with taking care of a one-million-dollar budget. A Circuit Court Clerk should always be transparent as to how the citizens money is spent, and how it benefits the county. Collins: As an over 20year veteran of service to the citizens from this office, I have gained the knowledge and experience to run this office efficiently. I have done the bookkeeping for over 18 years and I have sat in every court and worked closely with each to know what is required and how the court operates. That knowledge and experience has given me the ability to lead that office by example and guarantee that each employee is properly trained in each court. What can be done to make the Circuit Court Clerk’s office more accessible to the public?

Shepard: I strive hard to make the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office accessible to everyone. When I took office, there were things I saw that needed change. I adopted the practice of asking myself these three questions before I presented my ideas to anyone. I ask myself if the project we are working on is going to be beneficial to the citizens and tax payers of Greene County. In all cases that answer has been yes. The second question I ask myself is, will the project be accessible to everyone. Services such as video conferencing, e-filing, and online court data are definitely accessible to everyone. These services protect the public and court personnel equally, while keeping dockets moving efficiently. The third question I ask myself is how do I educate the public about improvements to the court system here in Greene County. Transparency is key. How did I come about this idea I want to implement? Where is the money going to come from to fund the project, and how much did the tax payers have to pay

for the service? Fortunately, the tax payers haven’t spent anything extra, on any new service we now provide since in took office in 2018. My door is always open to discuss how your tax dollars are being spent, and I will always be open to suggestions on how we can do things better here at the Clerk’s office. Collins: The Circuit Court Clerk’s office will be more accessible to the public due to the proper training and being well versed in the filings we handle on a daily basis. The citizens of Greene County will receive the most efficient information due to the experience and knowledge I will use to lead the office and efficiently train the employees. The citizens will also receive compassion and transparency from myself to ensure the office will be led by example. A brief additional statement, if desired Shepard: There are only a handful of Circuit Court Clerks that have served in Greene County. Each one of those Clerks’ tenures

presented challenges that needed to be addressed. Those challenges have changed a lot since Circuit Court for Greene County was established in 1810. What I have found is, all the Circuit Court Clerks that have preceded me handled their duties admirably, and with a real compassion and love for what they do. They did their best to make sure the next Circuit Court Clerk had all the resources they needed to make the office work efficiently and safely. I continue to build on the groundwork my predecessors established. Experience is a very important factor when making decisions that involve the public’s tax dollars. Or, just being Circuit Court Clerk in general. I don’t think one could ever learn everything there is to know about the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office. It is an ever-changing career, with responsibilities that require an energetic and forward-thinking Clerk to keep the office moving efficiently, while still showing the compassion and help that we are

known for here at the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office. I understand this office, and I know what it takes to make each aspect of this office perform I am the only candidate in this race that has experience being Circuit Court Clerk. I think that carries a lot of weight. Four years as Circuit Court Clerk has prepared me for the upcoming term. I have recognized and helped solve challenges faced by the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office. I have made friends with Clerks all over the state that I often call upon for advice or new ideas. I have begun reaching out to our youth in schools to educate them about the court system. I’ve started an internship program with the Greene Center for Technology criminal justice class. I’m looking into ways to help those addicted in our community by providing all the services that should be available to them. I am dedicated to making sure our records are kept safe from cyberattacks and ransomware. Courthouses here in Tennessee have already

Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE



4 Candidates Running For Register of Deeds BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER Four Republicans are running for the office of Greene County Register of Deeds. The winner of the Republican primary will run unopposed in the Aug. 4 General Election. Those running for the office are incumbent Joy Rader, Matthew Carpenter, Karen Collins Ottinger, and Tamara Hartman Wilcox. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

CARPENTER Matthew Millard Carpenter, 46, lives in the 6th District. He lives on a farm in Mohawk with his wife, Amanda, and their two children. He has a senior year college education from East Tennessee State University where he was majoring in history with a double minor in both secondary education and geography. He has worked as an install technician and a call center shift supervisor for the local cable company, a CDL truck driver for both Coca-Cola and Lowe’s, and a personal trainer for the local YMCA. He was then hired by the Assessor of Property’s office as a field appraiser/ deputy assessor for Greene County. He served in several roles as needed in his time at the county office. In 2020, he took a position in the Division of Property Assessment with the State Comptroller’s office as an assessment specialist.

OTTINGER Karen Collins Ottinger, 54, is a South Greene graduate and completed Kaplin University financial education classes and management and leadership classes through her employer. She is a member of the Complete Count Committee for Census 2020. She is employed by Belk as a cosmetics manager going on 26 years. She has also worked part-time in the past at Tusculum College in telecounseling.

RADER Joy Rader, 72, is the daughter of Oakley and Ruby Gunter of the Camp Creek community, and was raised on a farm with eight siblings. She attended Camp Creek School, and graduated from South Greene High School in May of 1966 at the age of 16. While in high school she attended Sandra Dean School of Hair Design and began her career in that field the following July, of 1966 with Sandra Smith. She is married to Attorney William (Bill) Nunnally and they live on East Allens Bridge Road in Greeneville. She has been serving as Register of Deeds since 1998. She was previously a business owner for 28 years. She is also a rental property manager.

WILCOX Tamara Hartman Wilcox, 39, is a lifelong resident of Greene County and grew up in the Mosheim community. Her parents are Terry and Linda Hartman. She graduated valedictorian from West Greene High School and from ETSU with a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting and a minor in finance. She currently lives in the Cedar Creek community with her 4-year-old twins. She has worked as the federal programs finance specialist for Greeneville City Schools for the past 16 years. She started working there while completing her degree at ETSU. She also owns a local store-

Matthew Carpenter

Karen Collins Ottinger

Joy Rader

Tamara Hartman Wilcox

front business, where she worked for many years before purchasing it from the previous owner in 2018. Why are you running for this office? Carpenter: I am running for the office of the Register of Deeds because I feel a calling to serve my fellow citizens of Greene County. I want to meet the needs of our taxpayers by offering my service as a trustworthy and a hardworking leader. I feel that there is a need for personal gratitude for the hard work that is already being accomplished by the staff of the Register of Deeds. I want the affiliated agencies and the public to be able to understand the needs of the Register’s office to accurately record the information, as well as, offer any feedback or concerns that would make “the process of recording” be able to run more smoothly. I wouldn’t mind to offer some yearly workshops or community center meetings where to help landowners and potential landowners learn more about the recording process and various types of deeds and what kind of deed is needed in each individuals situation. I want to be a positive influence on the people of Greene County outside the office in my personal/public life. I feel as if it is my sole duty to serve these citizens and serve them well, all the while having a smile on my face. Ottinger: I have thought about running for this office in the past. Now I believe is my time to do so. I want to serve the people of Greeneville and Greene County. Rader: I am excited to be seeking reelection because I enjoy working with my staff serving the citizens of Greene County. The teamwork in this office is what keeps the operation running smoothly, diligently working together. We continuously make updates in the Register’s Office with technology. If elected I will continue to make the county registry’s documents efficient and as user friendly and accessible as possible. Wilcox: This is my first time running for a political office, but it has always been a goal of mine to be a servant leader and do what I can to better our community. My experience and skillset make the position of register of deeds a good fit for me. Our citizens deserve to be treated with exceptional customer service each time they call or come in one of our county offices. I would like to look into expanding office hours from the current closing time of 4:30 p.m. to better serve the people of this county. Greene County is such a wonderful place to live and it would be my honor to serve citizens in this capacity. What do you consider to be the most important task for a Register of Deeds? Carpenter: The most important task of a Register of Deed is to be a present leader in carrying out the most accurate recording of our county’s documents. It is important that the Register is giving the adequate resources needed for anyone person in that office so they can perform their role, successfully. It is a team effort in that office and you are the coach, the trainer, the H2O specialist, and last but not least, another player alongside the best of the

best, your teammates. You take on any task needed to get the job done and the win. I know this isn’t a game but when it’s all on the line, you will have a winning combination of exceptional service if you create a relationship with your fellow employees. The win is in knowing that the Register of Deeds is offering the most successful customer service in recording of the deeds and documents of our county. Ottinger: Accuracy is the most important job of the office. The documents need to be registered, indexed, and scanned accurately and efficiently to ensure attorneys, banks, title companies, surveyors and the citizens can find the documents they need. Rader: The most important task is serve the public in a courteous and efficient manner. We are thorough, and accurate with attention to detail, to preserve past and present records, for our county and future generations. It is important to provide information and record documents in a timely manner since we work so close with the public, attorneys, title companies, realtors, bankers and surveyors. Our bookkeeping is crucial to be accurate, organized and on time. The most important qualities are to be courteous and professional and to be a people person. Wilcox: The most important job of the Register of Deeds is to make sure that all records are maintained accurately and recorded timely as documents are brought in. The register of deeds should also make sure that citizens are treated as a priority and with respect each time they deal with this office. Other important responsibilities for the register of deeds include maintaining a budget within their allocated funding, managing employees and serving our citizens with integrity. If elected, what experience and personal strengths will you bring to this office? Carpenter: If elected as the Register of Deeds, I promise you the commitment that I give my church, EnCompass. I promise to serve you as I serve my God. Whether it be in the background or in the frontlines, I will serve in any way that is pleasing to God. I am here to give you, Greene County, the best of me. I am here to serve you in the capacity that is pleasing to reach and meet your needs as taxpaying citizens. I am currently doing just that, serving you in the background in my job with the state. I am looking at the deeds of our county, as well as other counties in upper East Tennessee, daily. I am continuing my education as we speak to further my knowledge in the area of Assessment and Administration. I work every single day to make sure that the work of our local counties is available and accurately concise. I am in the background as a support to these counties making sure that the proper resources are available to them so that they can do their job as accurate as possible. I am here to answer their questions and support them when the time comes. Ottinger: I have over 26 years of experience working with the public, and getting tasks done in a timely manner. I have experience working with a

team to meet and exceed work duties. Rader: I am dedicated to my staff, and to the citizens of Greene County. I possess strong business skills. As a certified public administrator, trainings and certifications have provided me with tools, to be informed, trained in order to lead and be an effective team player. It is through my experience as the register and continued training that I learn more about workplace environment, goal setting, personnel management, legal issues, state recording laws and proper documentation requirements. I am adaptable to technology and mandated changes. I have a natural ability to use common sense approaches, and can communicate with the staff, and the public in a professional manner. We often hear compliments from our patrons. Wilcox: In my current position at Greeneville City Schools, I have gained unique experience in government and learned the importance of maximizing taxpayer dollars. Some of my responsibilities include budgeting, federal and state reporting, recording historical documents, and managing grant expenditures. I am also subject to an audit each year by an independent CPA firm. In addition to my role with the school system, I own a

storefront business which gives me experience in budgeting, managing employees and most importantly, customer service. I have worked two jobs since I was 18 and I know the importance of keeping my time separate for each role that I have. I have the government experience, leadership skills, integrity and detail-oriented mind that it requires to be a good Register of Deeds for Greene County. A brief additional statement, if desired Carpenter: Citizens of Greene County, the time has come for you to call upon me, as your next Register of Deeds. I believe in the work of the people that serve you in our county’s office. I believe in the ability to work in unison and while offering a smooth experience for our customers. I need you to believe in me and my abilities to perform the job and task at hand. I need your help, in helping me complete this task by casting your vote for me. It is my prayer, that you seek God’s wisdom in helping cast your vote in our elections this year. This is the most important thing I think anyone can do is pray for the needs of our county and its officials. If you want to know more about me, there is a video titled “Campaign Story” that is about me, my family,

our belief in fulfilling a family legacy of believing in serving others. It’s on my Matthew Carpenter for Register of Deeds Facebook page. I hope you take the time to search it on the internet. It can be accessed publicly. Most importantly, I thank you for taking the time to read and hopefully you consider, then vote for me in the May 3 Republican Primary, for Register of Deeds. I, Matthew M. Carpenter would be honored to serve you. Ottinger: If elected, I will remember that I work for the taxpayers of Greeneville and Greene county. I want to learn each job of the office. When the citizens come to the office I want them to know who I am, and to make sure when they walk away that they had a good experience with the office. Rader: It is a pleasure to serve the Citizens of Greeneville and Greene County. Since I am part of the working force, I may not be able to see everyone because of my responsibilities in the office. However, please be on the lookout for me during my campaign, and feel free to ask me any questions, wave hello, as I appreciate the kindness, the votes and support. Vote Joy Radar! I will be running on the ballot as Joy Radar. Wilcox: I would appreciate your prayers, your support and your vote for Greene County Register of Deeds in the May 3 Republican Primary. If you would like more information, you can find my Facebook page by searching Tamara Hartman Wilcox for Greene County Register of Deeds. May God bless our country, our community and you. Remember to “check the box for Wilcox” for Register of Deeds.

• Lifelong Greene County resident. • Bachelor of Business Administration from ETSU (Major: Accountancy, Minor: Finance). • More than 16 years of governmental finance experience. • Experience in management and customer service. • Committed to delivering accurate recording and reporting.

I appreciate your vote!

Page 6 • THE



3 Running For Circuit Court Judgeship In 3rd Judicial District BY KEN LITTLE STAFF WRITER Three candidates are running for the 3rd Judicial District Circuit Court-Part II judgeship in the May 3 Republican Primary. Judge William E. Phillips II is challenged by Assistant District Attorney General Bradley Mercer and Greeneville attorney Crystal Jessee. Phillips was appointed by Gov. Bill Lee to fill out the remainder of the term of Judge Thomas J. Wright, who retired in 2021. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. {div class=”subscriber-only”}Early voting begins April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3. The primary winner will run unopposed in the general election Aug. 4.{/div} Why are you seeking the Circuit Court Judgeship? Phillips: I was appointed Circuit Judge by Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee in October of 2021, and I have served the citizens of the 3rd Judicial District in that role for the past six months. I have the experience, qualifications, and temperament necessary to serve as Circuit Judge. I am running to retain my office, and to continue to serve the citizens of Hawkins, Hancock, Hamblen, and Greene counties. Mercer: When fellow Greene Countian, Judge (Thomas) Wright, told me he would not seek re-election, I knew his retirement would mean we were losing a judge who stood for fairness, impartiality, integrity, and justice. I announced my candidacy in July of 2021 to ensure voters had the option to elect another Greene Countian who reflects those same values. I have stood for those principles as an Assistant District Attorney for the past eight years. It has been an honor to protect and serve my home county and district as Assistant District Attorney, but I believe I can better protect and serve my home as the next Circuit Court Judge for the 3rd Judicial District, Part II. Jessee: I have practiced law for close to 20 years, and during this time, I have been able to practice in every type of court in Tennessee, and have also been admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court. Because of my diverse practice, I have been able to travel to other jurisdictions, and observe many

Crystal Jessee

Bradley Mercer

William E. Phillips II

other judges. Representing your county in the opioid litigation has given me insight into just how severely our county was impacted. All of these opportunities continue to drive me to do what I can to improve the court system, and the county in which I reside and practice. I will make a difference in our judicial system and bring about opportunities for families suffering in our area. I will be tough on crime; nonetheless, I understand that there are grants out there that could bring other avenues of correction for inmates to shift the burden off the jails and mitigate incarceration rates. One specific area that needs to be addressed is to start a Veteran’s Court Program through the 3rd Judicial District. With 10% of our citizens being veterans, this is an opportunity that will bring added support to those that have sacrificed for our freedom. Additionally, this seat has always been held by a Greene County attorney, serving the four counties. Currently we do not hold a single Circuit seat. When I began practicing in 2005, two of the four positions were held by Greene County lawyers. Today, none of them are occupied by Greene County attorneys, which makes it much more difficult for our law enforcement officials when they are in need to of search warrants and various legal documents signed. It is important, to maintain a seat for Greene County, and I believe I have the most experience to fill this position. In your opinion, what are the most important qualities that a Circuit Court judge must have? Phillips: Integrity, experience, compassion, and consistency. I have represented clients in Circuit Court for two decades. Since taking the bench, I have relied on that experience to fairly adjudicate the controversies that have come before me with compassion, but also with strict adherence to the law.

Mercer: A judge must possess integrity, impartiality, fairness, and intelligence. All judges must, also, possess the ability to listen to both sides, apply the law to the facts, and understand how one’s decision will affect the individuals before the court. A judge must also calmly and courteously communicate with the attorneys, litigants, witnesses, jurors, and courtroom personnel. A Circuit Court judge should have the ability to handle a large case load and possess a great work ethic. Finally, a Circuit Court judge, must put the duties of the office ahead of one’s personal and extrajudicial activities. Jessee: Honesty, Integrity, and experience. I have had the opportunity to serve our community through several social clubs, seeing the need to give back. I have been active in civic organizations, in an effort to better our community and give back to those in need. Through this experience, I have seen the need (and it has) allowed me to serve and connect with my community. Being a good judge is not just just about serving in the courtroom, but it is about knowing your community. We should want leaders that (including judges) should have an active leadership role in our their community. I have spent countless hours helping local schools and advocating for the children of Greene County, and have proven their interest in seeing the community grow. I see being a judge as an honor and will work year-round to earn the continued support of Greene County citizens. One ongoing example of how I have tirelessly worked for the citizens — We need politicians, including judges that work year around and not just at election time; those that are truly invested in our future. Representing Greene County has been through our fight with the opioid litigation. This fight has given me that opportunity to work with

many individuals and various organizations and in different settings. I have worked diligently with each of you to help to begin to build better a safer, more responsive community, and want to continue to do so. What in your background and experience do you think best prepares you for this office? Phillips: Prior to being appointed Circuit Judge by Gov. Lee, I practiced law in Circuit Court for nearly 20 years. I went through an extensive vetting process prior to my appointment. As Gov. Lee said, “There is a very serious vetting process that in my view delivers the most highly qualified person for the job. Certainly, Judge Phillips is highly qualified, and the most highly qualified person for this, and is already serving incredibly in this role.” In the last six months of serving as Circuit Judge, not one type of case has come before me that I have not personally handled as an attorney. The litigants and attorneys that appear in my court can rest assured that their judge has the experience and knowledge of the law to fairly and timely adjudicate their case. Mercer: My diverse experience, whether raising cattle, working in a restaurant kitchen, working with the legislature, or practicing law all over the State of Tennessee prepares me to handle this position with confidence and integrity. I have handled almost every type of civil law, e.g., divorces, child custody, utilities liability, contracts, municipal liability, defense of law enforcement, etc. Additionally, I am the only candidate to have handled criminal defense and criminal prosecutions. As a criminal prosecutor, I am held to a higher standard under the rules that govern the practice of law in Tennessee, and I have never had a complaint filed against me. As a prosecutor, I have interacted with victims, law enforcement, courtroom personnel, attorneys, judges,

and defendants. I believe those individuals will tell you that I exemplify the qualities I listed as most important for this office. Most importantly, I have already been a public servant exercising quasi-judicial discretion for the past eight years as a prosecutor, making the tough decisions and standing for our community when others would try to bully us. Jessee: I have the most diverse and extensive court and trial experience of any of the other candidates. I have served as magistrate in this district, allowing me to know the region on a more personal level. I have a strong work ethic and I believe that this is a position paid for by our citizens that deserve to see a judge working every day. Therefore, you will see me in court working through the docket, to derail frivolous overtime and other undue taxpayers’ expenses. I am the only candidate that has been approved to practice before the United States Supreme Court. A brief additional statement, if desired Phillips: I pledge to each of you to bring integrity, fairness, and compassion to the bench with me every day. I will work tirelessly to apply the law as it is written to the controversy before me. I humbly ask for your vote. Mercer: I am a 9th generation Greene Countian, and my family settled in Greene County before Tennessee was a state. I am blessed to have been born and raised in Greene County, and I am proud to have been educated in the Greeneville City School System. I obtained my undergraduate degree from Tusculum College, just as my grandfather, Mason Mercer, did before me. I was fortunate to practice with my father, Jim Mercer, when I returned from law school. State Senator Steve Southerland was so gracious to teach me about the governance of our state and allowed me to help him get elected to the State Senate twice as his campaign manager. This is my home, and my wife, Chelsea, and I decided to raise our family here. For all these reasons, I have done everything in my power to serve and protect our home for the past eight years and I will continue to serve and protect our home if elected as your next Circuit Court Judge. Judge Wright left big shoes to fill, but I promise that I will get up every day striving to fill them. Thank you, and I humbly ask you for your vote. Jessee: Like many of

the individuals in Greene County, I came from humble beginnings. I am a first generation college graduate, on my father’s side. I was raised on a dairy farm, raising tobacco every year, and working steadily beside my parents. I understand that value of hard work. I understand how it feels to live paycheck to paycheck. I did not have anyone in the legal field in my family. I had to gain all of my experience from hard work. This is the first political office for which I have ran. I was previously appointed as Child Support Magistrate for the 3rd Judicial District and held that position for several months traveling through the counties of Hamblen, Hawkins, Greene and Hancock. I started practicing law in Memphis, with an insurance defense firm before moving back to East Tennessee. I have had the opportunity to work for and with several local law firms, including: Douglas Jenkins; Petkoff and Lancaster; Rogers, Laughlin, Nunnally, Hood & Crum; Foster & Flohr; and McHugh-Fuller. Each of these firms practice a broad range of law: including criminal law, civil litigation, contract disputes, domestic law, and administrative law. My greatest experience, has come from representing your county, along with 14 other counties in Tennessee, through opioid litigation. This has given me great insight and experience at a high level, and fostered a better understanding of how the legal systems differ across our state and our nation. I am the only candidate running that has been approved to practice in every court within the State of Tennessee (state courts and federal courts), as well as being admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. I have been honored to serve as past president of the Greene County Republican Women, and also as well as the chair of the Lincoln Day Dinner. I proudly have tried to serve the community, and its citizens, every day, to continue to in hopes of making Greene County a better place to live and raise my daughter. I have been voted the best attorney in Greene County for the past three years, and the best firm in Greene County for 2021. I want to take this experience and love of our community and use it to better serve the community and the people of Greene County from on the bench. I would appreciate your vote and continued support.

2 Seek 3rd Judicial District Public Defender Position BY KEN LITTLE STAFF WRITER Two assistant public defenders will vie for the 3rd Judicial District public defender position in the May 3 Republican Primary. Todd Estep and DeAnna Snyder both serve the public in the 3rd Judicial District under longtime judicial district Public Defender Greg Eichelman, who earlier announced he will not run for reelection. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3. The primary winner will run unopposed in the general election Aug. 4. Why are you seeking the Public Defender position? Estep: I decided to run for District Public Defender because of the impact I feel I can make on people’s lives and in our district. People from all walks of life look to me to help them in the most uncertain time in their life. I help them navigate through their legal issues, as well as try and help them formulate a plan for future success, and I feel that I have made an

Todd Estep

DeAnna Snyder

impact in the lives of my clients and my community. I know that as the District Public Defender, I can reach more people and make a bigger positive impact on the people we serve and our communities. Snyder: I am proud that I have been an Assistant Public Defender for over 17 years. I am fortunate to have had the best mentor in Greg Eichelman, our current Public Defender. I have watched him excel in defending the indigent and being a leader for our office. When he announced his retirement, I knew that I had the experience required to continue his legacy with a seamless transition. I have practiced in every county in our district, handling a wide range of cases. I have

had the opportunity to get to know many people throughout the different communities that we serve, and I have seen the struggles of each community. I will continue to advocate for every citizen in the 3rd Judicial District whether or not our services are needed. Having already raised my family, I have the time necessary to dedicate to the position of Public Defender. What changes or improvements would you like to see in the way this office serves the public? Estep: As your next Public Defender, I will ensure our office provides the best legal advocacy in our region, but also lead its evolution into a community law approach by helping our clients beyond

their legal issues. Community law is essentially our office’s approach to reduce recidivism (people that reoffend). The Public Defender must coordinate efforts of pre-existing support programs to best fit the individual and their journey back into society. Every jail has a multitude of programs designed to prepare those about to reenter society, but the issues an individual is facing requires long-term follow up care. An individual may need housing, help applying for a job or continued support in addressing a substance abuse or mental health issue. Often times these folks don’t have the means to do this on their own. Our office, with help from our social worker (an open position by the way), is best situated to formulate after care plans specialized to the needs of the individual with the goal of reducing recidivism. Alternative funding sources that do not affect the taxpayer must also be leveraged for our office to be able to handle this transition while protecting our current employees from heavy caseloads, but doing so responsibly without bloating a government agency or using taxpayer dollars. I am, after all, a Conservative Republican. I have prepared for this

moment for long time and have developed relationships with elected officials, community organizations, and health care providers throughout our region focused on implementing these interventions here in Greene County. I am asking you to elect me into the position so that I can finish what I’ve started and apply these preparations to our entire District. Snyder: I want the Public Defenders Office to be a valuable community resource. If you need help with finding out what steps to take to get your drivers license reinstated, getting information for treatment or housing, I want you to be able to call the Public Defenders Office to at least get pointed in the right direction. A lot of people feel these tasks are too unattainable and do not know where to start. I want that start to be the Public Defenders Office. As far as improvements, I want to continue to expand our office by working closely with the Public Defenders Conference in Nashville and our state legislators. When I was hired in 2004, we had six Assistant Public Defenders, two investigators, an office manager and two administrative assistants. Today, we have grown to nine Assistant Public De-

fenders, two investigators, an office manager and four administrative assistants. I believe our greatest need currently is the need of an additional investigator. What types of cases do you see as an assistant public defender? Does that shape the way you approach the job? Estep: My caseload ranges from public intoxication to First Degree Murder. My approach to every case is the same initially. My client is someone’s son or daughter. Listening is as important as my knowledge of the law. Some cases are not as complex as others, but I strive to make my clients feel as if they were my only client. Voters should know I am the only candidate who has tried 1st degree murder to a jury. I am assigned to Greene County, but I took on these extra cases. I did so in Hawkins County as the primary attorney, and I tried a Hancock County case that was tried in Morristown where the Government was seeking life without the possibility of parole. The magnitude of these cases makes this level of trial experience crucial for our district, the public defender’s office, and I am SEE DEFENDER ON PAGE 8

Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE




GREENE COUNTY, TENNESSEE MAY 3, 2022 REPUBLICAN BALLOT Circuit Court Judge Part I, District 3 Vote for One (1)

Alex E. Pearson

Circuit Court Judge Part II, District 3 Vote for One (1)

County Commissioner District 2 Vote for Three (3)

County Commissioner District 6 Vote for Three (3)

Register of Deeds Vote for One (1)

Joshua Arrowood

Jeffrey Bible

Matthew M Carpenter

Alan Marsh

Larkin Clemmer

Karen Collins Ottinger

Chase Murray

Joy Rader

Brad Peters

Tamara Hartman Wilcox

Bradley Mercer

County Commissioner District 7 Vote for Three (3)

William E. Phillips II

Beth Boniface

Chancellor District 3 Vote for One (1)

Douglas T. Jenkins

County Commissioner District 3 Vote for Three (3)

District Attorney General District 3 Vote for One (1)

Dan E. Armstrong

Jason Cobble

Terry “Mike” Musick

O.J. Early

Robert Pleasant

Robin D. Quillen

Kevin B Swatsell

School Board Member District 1 Vote for One (1)

Greeneville Municipal Election School Board Member At-Large Vote for One (1)

Craig A. Shepherd

Stacey Franklin

School Board Member District 3 Vote for One (1)

Eric D. Scott County Trustee Vote for One (1)

Nathan R. Holt County Commissioner District 4 Vote for Three (3)

William “Bill” Dabbs Eddie Jennings

Kenneth N. Bailey, Jr.

Adam Musgrove Tim Smithson

Larry Bible

School Board Member District 4 Vote for One (1)

General Sessions Judge Vote for One (1)

Sheriff Vote for One (1)

Andy Barham Wesley Holt

DeAnna Snyder

School Board Member District 5 Vote for One (1)

Gary Compton

School Board Member District 6 Vote for One (1)

Mark Rothe County Commissioner District 5 Vote for Three (3)

Circuit Court Clerk Vote for One (1)

Lloyd “Hoot” Bowers

Whitney Shelton Collins

Terry E Greer

Pamela B. Carpenter

Chris Shepard

Kevin C. Morrison

Lynn E. Fillers Jeremy Michael Roberts

County Commissioner District 1 Vote for Three (3)

Constable District 7 Vote for One (1)

Jan Kiker

Todd Estep

County Mayor Vote for One (1)

Road Superintendent Vote for One (1)

Paul Burkey Teddy L. Lawing

Lyle Parton Public Defender District 3 Vote for One (1)

Lisa Bowman Anderson

Dillon Carpenter

Criminal Court Judge District 3 Vote for One (1)

John F. Dugger Jr.

Matthew Brobeck

Timothy Dell Vonglis

Crystal Goan Jessee

Circuit Court Judge Part III, District 3 Vote for One (1)

Constable District 6 Vote for One (1)

Gary Shelton

County Clerk Vote for One (1)

Andrew James Anderson

Kathy Crawford

Lori Bryant

Nick Gunter

Kallie Lister

Charles “Tim” White

Constable District 1 Vote for One (1)

Travis Dearstone

Constable District 2 Vote for One (1)

Wayne Wilhoit

Constable District 3 Vote for One (1)

Kenneth W. Bitner

DEMOCRATIC BALLOT Circuit Court Judge Part I, District 3 Vote for One (1)

County Mayor Vote for One (1)

Circuit Court Judge Part II, District 3 Vote for One (1)

County Commissioner District 1 Vote for Three (3)

Darrell Key

County Commissioner District 5 Vote for Three (3)

Constable District 2 Vote for One (1)

Circuit Court Clerk Vote for One (1)

Constable District 3 Vote for One (1)

County Clerk Vote for One (1)

Constable District 4 Vote for One (1)

Register of Deeds Vote for One (1)

Constable District 5 Vote for One (1)

Road Superintendent Vote for One (1)

Constable District 6 Vote for One (1)

Constable District 1 Vote for One (1)

Constable District 7 Vote for One (1)

County Commissioner District 6 Vote for Three (3)

John Squibb Waddle Jr.

Circuit Court Judge Part III, District 3 Vote for One (1)

Sheriff Vote for One (1)

County Commissioner District 2 Vote for Three (3) County Commissioner District 7 Vote for Three (3)

Chancellor District 3 Vote for One (1)

Criminal Court Judge District 3 Vote for One (1)

County Commissioner District 3 Vote for Three (3) County Trustee Vote for One (1)

District Attorney General District 3 Vote for One (1) County Commissioner District 4 Vote for Three (3) Public Defender District 3 Vote for One (1)

Amanda R. Beamer

General Sessions Judge Vote for One (1)

Page 8 • THE



4 Candidates In Republican Primary For 1st District Commissioner BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER There are three candidates on the ballot for 1st Commission District in the May 3 Republican Primary, along with one write-in candidate. The three winners of the Republican primary will face a Democratic candidate, Darrell Key, and an Independent candidate, Todd Pierce, in the Aug. 4 General Election in a five-person race for three seats. Those running in the Republican Primary whose names’ will appear on the ballot are Kathy Crawford, Nick Gunter and Charles “Tim” White. Jim Hawkins will also be eligible to receive votes as a certified write-in candidate. Crawford and White are incumbents. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

CRAWFORD Kathrine “Kathy Crawford, 73, was raised in Gate City, Va. She became a hairdresser in 1966, starting at Modern Beauty Shop in Gate City, and moving to Greene County in 1973 after marrying Bill Crawford. She ran unsuccessfully for Greene County Board of Education in 1990. She ran again in 1998 for Greene County School Board and won a seat. She ran again in 2002 and was defeated. After school board redistricting she ran again in 2004 and was defeated. She then ran again in 2006 and won a seat once more, and was reelected to the seat in 2010. She chose not to run for School Board again in 2014, and in 2018 she won election to one of three First District Commission seats. She is now seeking reelection to the seat.

GUNTER Nick Gunter, 39, is running for a political office for the first time in his bid for 1st District County Commissioner in Greene County. He has been married to Aundrea

Katherine “Kathy” Crawford

Gass Gunter for almost 18 years. They have two children. He is a state licensed contractor and works for Gunter Construction Inc. His past employment includes I&E maintenance planner at US Nitrogen, and he began his career in maintenance at Tusculum University as an HVAC technician. He is active in his church and serves as the music minister. He holds a bachelor’s degree in ministry.

WHITE Charles “Tim” White, 55, has an associate’s degree in science from Walters State Community College. He has been a commissioner in the 1st District since 2002.

HAWKINS Jim Hawkins, 63, of the Lost Mountain Community of Greene County is married to the former Gail Marie Patnode. They have two daughters together. Additionally, he has two stepchildren and seven grandchildren. He is a retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel as well as a federal civilian engineer in multiple disciplines. He attended Baileyton Elementary and graduated from North Greene. He has bachelor’s degrees in environmental biology from Tusculum University and electronics engineering from the University of South Florida. He has a Masters of Science in environmental health from East Tennessee State University. From 1992 to 2002, he served as an Air Force Reserve officer in a variety of assignments, as a corporate aerospace engineer, and as a federal civilian engineer in a variety of assignments in Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee. In 2002 he was

band, internet options are available to everyone willing to contract for them. Also, the expense is not something the county taxpayer should shoulder. Commercially available broadband is provided to Greene County already by multiple commercial providers, such as Comcast/X-Finity, Spectrum Wireless, Verizon, Dish and Direct TV, Starlink, etc. Additional providers are entering the market as well. One of those new Jim Hawkins Nick Gunter Charles “Tim” White providers is GLPS and will and delve into the pay and be available to every GLPS recalled to active military some difficulty retainbenefit structure before duty, serving in a numing employees as they customer. Again, while I ber of capacities before leave for higher wages I can give an informed think county investment in decision. That being said, retiring in August 2011. elsewhere. Would you this area is not necessary, Upon returning to Greene support a pay increase I do support providing it might be advisable to ofour critical workers with a fer tax advantages or other County, he worked at the for these personnel competitive salary in order incentives to encourage TA in Baileyton, Premium or do you have anothto retain and attract qualWaters, and Donaldson er solution? Please broadband expansion. Corp. in Greeneville, explain why you would ified candidates for these A brief additional and at KOYO/JETKT in or would not support a positions. statement, if desired Telford before returning pay increase. Broadband interCrawford: I have to Federal Civilian Service Crawford: The problem net has become an always supported Greene in Florida, South Carolina, with all these departments important part of the County offices. We do Alaska, and Kentucky. His is staff retention. That falls 21st Century economy. have a problem here with last position was the direc- back on salary and wages. Should Greene County people going hungry. As I will always support tor of public works at the invest funds to help good as some of us eat, we salary and wage increases Blue Grass Army Depot expand broadband ser- should find a way to feed for these departments. in Richmond, Kentucky, vices? Why or why not? our people. When you are I have for the last four where he helped destroy out all over the county, you Crawford: Broadband years, and will continue the last remaining chemcan find someone to help. is extremely important to do so. These people ical weapons stockpile in especially now since there It doesn’t take a lot of work extremely hard for the United States. money, just a caring heart. has been a sudden jump Why are you running our county and deserve an in working and schooling And we have a big problem increase. for this office? with mental illness. As I from home. If you do not Gunter: I feel that pay Crawford: After said in a meeting earlier, have internet access, you increases are certainly serving four years on the our Number 1 problem is can’t keep your job and something that should be County Commission, I drugs and the Number 2 you sure can’t keep your looked into and discussed realize that I am just now problem is mental illness. school work up to date. learning about how county heavily. As I would be To Greene County citizens Yes I support broadband, government works. Hope- new to the Commission, I all across the county: I and we should invest in would want to seek counlove this county and all the the 21st century. fully, the next four years I Gunter: The COVID-19 people here. You have welwill have learned a lot and sel from all those involved, pandemic exposed the be more informed to make i.e., the County Budget comed me since January need for an additional great decisions. Director, HR Director, 1973. I would appreciate internet service provider Gunter: I want what etc., before committing your vote, but if you can’t, with greater bandwidth is best for my community to that financial decision. vote for someone you have capabilities throughout the faith in and that won’t and Greene County. I want I am not against giving county. The ever-growing to be a sound voice and pay increases. We need to tell you “falsehoods.” the best advocate for all study other county systems scene of online learning Thank you for reading my and work-from-home citizens of Greene County, comparable to ours with responses. employment supports and I feel the best way to a higher retention rate. Gunter: Gunter did the needed infrastrucdo this is by representing There are many variables not provide an additional Greene County as a Comto consider, and I would statement. ture expansion. I plan to want better educate myself look more closely at the missioner. White: If we want on the county’s financial White: White did not to move forward in our county’s financial ability status to make the best-in- to afford a project such provide an answer to this community, we must invest question. in our young people. I’m a as broadband. For my formed decision. We Hawkins: In a nutshell, need to do what we can to huge advocate of technical constituents, competition I want to make Greene education. I believe young ensure our public servants from internet providers County, TN a better place people need something to means lower prices and in Greene County earn a to live, work, and raise a take pride in, let’s give them better service. I believe it competitive wage. family. I have lived a life of an opportunity to be proud would be in the county’s White: Greene County service. It is part of who I of a career through technibest interest if financially employees have a very am and I cannot let it go, good benefit package, what possible. cal education, without a pile having spent the last 40 White: Broadband is we need is a larger work of “student loan debt!” years serving my country. essential in today’s society. pool. We have trouble Hawkins: Albert I’m ready to dedicate my I think that’s unfortunate! Einstein said “Only a life competing in our region energies and expertise to with the limited resources Nonetheless, it is essential spent in the service of serving my local communi- that are available to us. and we need to invest in others is worth living” to that direction. We are quickly become a ties and Greene County. which I humbly agree. I Hawkins: County inretirement community. The Greene County can think of no higher goal Hawkins: In principal, vestment is not necessary. than to serve my family, Highway Department, yes. However, I need to the Sheriff’s Office, friends, and neighbors in While not every residence see all the numbers first and EMS have had my local communities. currently has broad-

personnel, and creating standard operating procedures to streamline productivity and CONTINUED FROM PAGE 6 increase return on investment. My life experience highlights the only assistant in the office/ my ability of leading a cohesive candidate with that experience. team to a common goal. I will Being a lawyer isn’t enough for continue to do this as the next this position – it takes a leader. Public Defender. I have served in several leaderSnyder: I see all ranges ship positions that have preof cases as an Assistant Pubpared me. As an infantry squad leader in the Marine Corps, I lic Defender, from the lowest was responsible for the lives misdemeanors to murder. I have of my brothers and millions of extensive trial experience in all dollars of equipment. I was retypes of cases. This shapes the sponsible for managing others to way I approach my job by reensure contracts were fulfilled. minding me that even the lowest I’ve managed a retail Western level of criminal charges is a pristore, scheduled the production ority to that particular client and of a corrugated box factory, and deserves my absolute attention lead a team of .NET technology just like a murder case. developers. I have worked into A brief additional stateleadership positions in nearment, if desired ly every job. I have extensive Estep: I may have graduated experience dealing with large high school from Elizabethton, budgets, evaluating individual but Greene County is home. I performance, management of have practiced here since 2013.


My wife and I chose to raise our three kids here and we are heavily involved in our community. We are invested in doing our part for the betterment of Greene County and our district. As your next Public Defender, I will continue to improve the level of representation from our office and to reduce the recidivism rate. As Public Defender, I will ensure we play a more crucial role in identifying the specific needs of the offender and therefore advocating an individualized treatment plan designed to maximize their success. In doing more to prepare our clients for life outside of jail, we be joining the fight against recidivism with law enforcement, judges and district attorneys to make our communities safer. Despite existing recovery court programs which do great work, these programs cannot handle the number of cases in our court system. Recently, I approached

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a program in Greene County that hadn’t applied to be on the State certified rehabilitation list (a criminal court requirement). I explained why this could benefit the community and their program. After advocating for them to apply, this program did so and their inclusion on the State Certified List will benefit our clients, their families, and our communities throughout the district. It will take leveraging every possible facility, program, housing and second chance employer possible to make an impact big enough to reduce the number of repeat offenders. These are examples that my deeds follow my words and that I am the best choice to be your next Public Defender. I’m the guy in the bow tie, my name is Todd Estep, and I humbly ask you for your vote. Snyder: I am proud to say that I am a product of the fine education system of the 3rd

Judicial District. I graduated from Cherokee High School in Hawkins County, where I played basketball and softball. I graduated from Walters State Community College in Hamblen County, where I was enrolled in the Legal Assistant Program. I received my bachelor’s degree at Tusculum College in Greene County where I majored in Organizational Management. When I was accepted at the Nashville School of Law, I was a single mother to a son who was in first grade at St. Clair Elementary School in Hawkins County. I did not want to take him out of the local school district so I decided to commute to Nashville twice a week to attend law school. I did this for four years. I will have this same level of determination in being your next Public Defender. I ask for your vote for Public Defender.

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Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE


4 Republicans Vie For 3 Seats In 2nd District Commissioner Primary that your constituents expect from their local government. If we want to be fully staffed Four Republicans are in our government departrunning for the three County ments, we are going to have Commission seats up for to step up and fund salary inelection in the 2nd Commiscreases in some manner. We sion District. may not be able to do it all at The three winners of the once. But constituents expect Republican primary will run their roads to get paved and unopposed in the Aug. 4 maintained. They expect the General Election. Sheriff’s Department to reThose running for the spond to an emergency. They three seats are Alan Marsh, expect EMS to show up to Brad Peters, Chase Murray help them or a loved one in a and Joshua Arrowood. time of need. We have to find Peters and Arrowood are a way to make sure that the Alan Marsh Brad Peters Chase Murray Joshua Arrowood incumbents. people’s money is spent wiseThe candidates recently Candice Poore Arrowood funding elsewhere, but to services to ensure that we do without further taxing our ly and in a way that provides responded to questions from have three children. Arcitizens. And, finally, we look at what we already offer them the greatest benefit and not lose any of the valuable The Greeneville Sun about rowood ran unsuccessfully services we now receive. And need to throttle the rampant and find that money from meets their expectations. their campaigns. within if possible. I believe for state representative I will be transparent by being inflation driven by free for Broadband internet Early voting begins on all spending by the Federal that every organization is in 2006. He then ran for honest in all I say and do, has become an importApril 13 and runs through fighting to keep good, quality ant part of the 21st CenGreene County Mayor 2014, keeping the public up to date government. You can’t dig April 28. The Republican yourself out of a hole. A 5% employees working and no but was not elected. He made with everything I do in my tury economy. Should Party primary will be held raise would normally be con- amount of money will make a third run for political office duties as a County CommisGreene County invest on May 3 and the general someone stay who wants to for the Greene County Com- sioner. sidered good, but not when funds to help expand election will be Aug. 4. go, but I believe that getting mission District 2 in a special Arrowood: I remain true we are facing 7% inflation. broadband services? fair, equitable wages is a election in 2016 and won. to my promises of prioriPeters: I would support Why or why not? good start to combatting this He then ran for reelection in tizing county spending and a pay increase for not only Marsh: Expanding MARSH issue head on. 2018 and won. keeping our spending and these offices, but many broadband internet service Arrowood: Wages for Why are you running Alan Marsh, 53, of taxes low. I believe governothers as well. Some people and bringing competition to Chuckey, earned a bachelor’s for this office? ment should be limited and think that when an employee county employees have been the market is one of the best problematic for some time. Marsh: I put my faith in degree in accounting and involved in only extremely leaves for another job you uses for the American Rescue Jesus and was saved at age a master’s in management limited areas. I keep the simply hire someone else and The problem with governPlan funds. While I would 31 at an independent Baptist citizens of Greene Couninformation systems from the transition is seamless. not have voted to saddle my ment work is that when you church. I later was ordained the University of Houston. But hiring an employee is an increase wages, the money ty updated on what their children with the additional He has held roles of increas- as a Deacon and then a government is doing through investment and it’s time-con- to increase those wages debt from ARP, I’d rather see few years later became the ing responsibility at several social media. I take my oath it spent wisely than wasted comes from the taxpayers. suming. At the Greeneville Church Treasurer. I am also Fortune 100 companies to the Constitutions of Tenon another liberal boonThe county has offset pay Public Works Department, a student of History and have nessee and the United States we have had an unprecedent- increases with benefits. But over his 24-year career. His doggle. Comcast invested in studied the documents of the seriously, and I do all that is current title is director of the county must compete ed amount of turnover in infrastructure and rightly founding fathers extensively: within my power to protect tax process. He also owns a with the private sector and the last few years, so I know was able to reap rewards The Declaration of Indepen- the rights and liberties of the firsthand how expensive it is with surrounding counties small business helping nonfrom their investment for profit organizations leverage dence, The Constitution of people of Greene County. My to replace employees. who have increased wages to many years. I haven’t seen the internet to serve their the United States, the Bill of record shows I have been acMurray: I am in complete get the necessary employees. any improvement in speed or members for over 20 years. Rights, and the Tennessee countable to the people who support of a pay increase for Employees and potential em- service since I moved here. He has been married to his Constitution, among others. elected me. I have used social these vital workers within ployees have families to think Many people are unable to wife, Marie, for 19 years This nation was founded media to pass along informa- our communities. I feel obtain service at all and get about. Since the beginning and raised four (now adult) by Christians on Christian tion concerning our upcomthat we should make these quoted as much as $20,000 of Covid, fear of the virus, step-children, numerous principles and values. We workers a top priority as they stimulus checks, runaway ing meetings and votes that to have service extended foster children, and currently are naturally endowed with would take place. I have also sacrifice their time and lives from a neighboring home. inflation, and other factors has a 16 year old adopted unalienable rights from our on a daily basis. They are passed along information These people are left with 1) have deepened the crisis. daughter in his home. Creator. We the people grant from government leaders part of the very fabric that abysmal service from satellite Many businesses are still limited powers to our State makes our county great. They struggling to get fully staffed. providers, 2) a hot spot from and concerning programs and even further limited work tirelessly to provide the Our county services are no designed to provide aid a cellular provider if close PETERS power to the Federal govern- during Covid. I also seek out valuable services they offer. to a tower, or 3) a multidifferent. When you cannot Brad Peters, 50, is a gradment. Over the past century constituent input on a variety My intent is not to raise taxes keep positions filled, you SEE PRIMARY ON PAGE 11 uate of Chuckey Doak High this has been twisted. Those or have to seek additional of votes that we make. As a cannot provide the services School class of 1990 and a in power have sought more historian, I look at evidence graduate of the University of power and we the people and parallels of similar Tennessee Knoxville class of did not draw the line in the situations to find solutions. 1995 with a (Bachelor of Sci- sand when we should have. As a coach, I lead and make decisions for my team while ence in civil engineering. He Emboldened, they changed trying to get the most out of was formerly employed with “freedom of religion” into “freedom from religion,” they the players I work with. The Tysinger, Hampton & PartGreene County Commission ners engineering consultants ended prayer in schools, leis made up of many different and the Tennessee Departgalized abortion and on and people with many different ment of Education. Curon it goes. Instead of legally rently, Peters is the public amending the constitution or strengths and weaknesses. works director and engineer even passing meaningful leg- I feel that my perspective for the Town of Greeneville. islation, the executive branch is unique and still provides He also has also served as a is “mandating” things where- a benefit to the citizens of Greene County. And it will be County Commissioner since in they have no authority, up to the voters of my district 2014. He is married to Paige the courts are “interpreting” to look at my record and my Province Peters and has the plain language to mean response to their requests three children. Peters attends differently from the original to decide if I still deserve to Mt. Zion United Methodist intent of the founding faChurch in Afton. thers. How can a justice who be allowed to serve them for cannot define what a woman another four years. The Greene County is be relied on to interpret MURRAY Highway Department, anything correctly? I do beChase Murray grew up lieve Jesus is coming back as the Sheriff’s Office, and EMS have had some on his family’s beef cattle is written in the Bible. I also farm in the Newmansville believe that we as Christians difficulty retaining emCommunity and he is a have a duty to be citizens, not ployees as they leave for lifelong Greene County “of this world” but “in this higher wages elsewhere. resident. He ran for County world”. We are to care for Would you support a pay Grew up in the South Greene Commission at 18 years old and maintain that which was increase for these perarea of Greene County. in 2010 in the 2nd District left for us until his return. As sonnel or do you have and was not elected. He Daniel stepped into the lion’s another solution? Please Parents were the late Kenneth attended and graduated from den but emerged victorious, explain why you would and Mary Belle Collins. North Greene High School. so I am stepping into politics. or would not support a He then attended Walters John Quincy Adams said, pay increase. Married to Rusty Ottinger. State Community College “Duty is ours; results are Marsh: I support increasMember of Greene County and obtained his Associates God’s.” ing the pay of county workers Degree in agriculture before Peters: I enjoy serving to be competitive in the marLivestock Association. transferring to Tennessee the community and feel that ket. The latest statistics were Notary. Technological University to I have a lot of experience 82% of county workers make receive a Bachelor’s Degree and insight when it comes to less than $15/hr. The person Cosmetic manager at in agriculture education. He many of the issues facing our driving you to the emergency Belk - for 26 years currently teaches agriculcounty. room should make at least Murray: I decided to ture and serves as the FFA that of the person working a Attends Loves Memorial run for County Commission Advisor at Chuckey-Doak drive thru window. The curChurch. High School. He has worked because I feel that I have had rent figures from the county for the Greene County School a calling placed on my life to show much improved fund Children - son Cameron serve my community. At 18 system for almost a decade. balances resulting from wise Coates, daughter Gretchen years old, I ran for County He has been married to his leadership and the hard work Commission here in the wife Sarah for nine years of our employees to deliver and husband Tyler Thompson. 2nd district and I learned so and they have two children. those results. If I work for a Grandchildren - Ryan, Murray and his family attend much from the commission- company that achieves great Limestone Free Will Baptist ers at that time. They truly results, I get a bonus. As Paul Branton, Baylen, and Dawsyn Church and are active in the embodied what servant lead- quotes from Deuteronomy youth and music ministries 25:4, “Thou shalt not muzzle ership is and I feel that I am Thompson. there. ready to carry on that strong the ox when he treadeth out the corn” and likewise county conservative leadership workers should share in the for the next 4 years. I am a ARROWOOD strong Christian conservative results they helped achieve. Joshua Arrowood, 38, has who believes in the ability to I am also for lower taxes. a Bachelor of Arts in history exercise our God given rights. Non-essential spending from Milligan University should be reined tightly in If elected I will support and and a master’s in history defend the U.S. Constitution. and tax rates need to be from American Military frozen and possibly rolled I will be accessible through University. He is currently back. The skyrocketing real in-person and social media, a history teacher and coach attending community events, estate prices will increase at South Greene Middle and answering your calls and our tax base over time School. He previously taught emails. I will support educa- allowing the same tax rate to and coached at Chuckbring increased revenues in tion by ensuring that teachfuture years. We should also ey-Doak Middle School. He ers have the tools they need continue to leverage grants has worked previous jobs to educate our community, and other revenue streams in sales, mail, and in-home state and nation’s future. I Paid by the candidate. to offset other expenses care. Arrowood and wife will back our community



“If elected I will remember I work for you, the taxpayers of Greeneville and Greene County! I will be there for you in the office. If you put your faith and trust in me I will work hard for you!”

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Readers Vote Voters Read

If you’re looking to connect with voters... 84% of Democratic, 83% of Republican and 81% of Independent voters regularly read newspapers in print or online. Impressive online response! 51% of voters rate local newspaper websites as reliable, accurate and in-depth for local political/civic issues. That’s more than all other websites. Now, as mobile usage emerges, 58% of voters who use mobile devices for political information use newspaper sources for that news. Seniority counts! The most reliable voting bloc, seniors, are frequent and regular newspaper readers - a whopping 84%. Surprise! 79% of young voters, 18-34, read a newspaper in print or online at least once a week. Even on mobile devices, young voters turn to newspaper sources Àrst for campaign and election news. When it comes to reliable, accurate and in-depth information about local politics, and ALL politics are LOCAL, newspapers - print and online - rank #1. Source: Moore Information (January 2012), American Voter Media Use

... no other medium outperforms newspaper media.

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Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE


O.J. Early

Eric Scott

Jan Kiker


Robin Quillen

Jason Cobble

Dillon Carpenter

3rd Commissioner District Sees 6 Candidates Compete In Republican Primary BY SPENCER MORRELL responded to questions STAFF WRITER A total of six individuals will be looking to fill three seats in the 3rd Commission District in the May 3 Republican Primary. The three winners of the Republican primary will run unopposed in the Aug. 4 General Election. Those running for the three seats are O.J. Early, Eric Scott, Jan Kiker, Robin Quillen, Jason Cobble, and Dillon Carpenter. Kiker, Quillen and Cobble are incumbents. The candidates recently


from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

EARLY O.J. Early, 31, of Owen Lane, is a marketing and communication specialist at East Tennessee State University, where he is also an elected member of the ETSU Staff Senate. He earned a master’s degree

to compete, and then only receiving a small fraction of homeowners as customer. CONTINUED FROM PAGE 9 And satellite internet and DSL is not really a comparayear wait for Elon Musk’s ble option as it is much more StarLink. Individually we cannot address the issue and spotty and slower. Hopefully Greeneville Light and Power need to work together as a can help pick-up much of community to achieve our the slack we now face. Covid goals. Partnering with the has shown a weakness in our electric companies that are internet coverage as many already delivering service to students, when required to go our homes to also provide virtual, were unable to conbroadband is a no brainer. By priming the pump with tinue their learning because ARP money and supporting of a lack of internet access. electric utility bids for TDThen there is the need for the ability for our citizens to work ECD grants, we can bring in choice and competition. This from home as many sectors also challenges Comcast to be have begun a migration to virtual meetings and work more competitive, improve across the internet. The lack their offerings, and provide better customer service. You of high-speed internet options has kept many from working. can’t provide virtual school, Xfinity’s lack of competition remote working, and other has led them to ignore certain modern needs without fast, strong, consistent broadband areas that are underserved. And internet has become internet. Bringing manufacturers to the county does cre- more aligned with needs such as electricity and water ate jobs and is a good thing than just a simple luxury. but bringing the resources Higher levels of government that allow our citizens to are providing grant money to work remotely for corporahelp build the necessary infrations around the world is an structure to provide higheven greater opportunity. speed internet. Hopefully Peters: Greene County access to these programs and should absolutely invest GLPS getting involved will in broadband internet. As help increase the availability Greene Countians, we know to our people. One problem what a great place this is to we have seen is that our state live, work, and worship and broadband internet, with the government has undercut local governments by taking educational and vocational away our bargaining power opportunities it provides, with cable/internet compawill make our county an even more attractive place to nies as the state government reside. now offers a state contract Murray: I myself do that cable/internet companies not have access to internet can accept instead of working at my home and I feel that with us to get a good contract broadband access should for our people. be available to all citizens. A brief additional I know that many counties statement, if desired surrounding our area have Marsh: The majority gotten a huge jump-start on of my adult life was in the broadband for all and I beHouston area and I have lived in several other states lieve that we should be right pursuing my career. When there with them. We need I reached the top of my to invest money in ensuring chosen profession and was that not only the access is there, but also it is affordable afforded the opportunity to live wherever I wanted, and efficient for the families I did a lot of research and it services. I know as an educator, the past two school analysis and narrowed it down to Eastern Tennessee. years have shown a light to Not only that, I chose Greene the lack of durable internet County specifically and not services our families have. Our school system attempted the “City of” anything, on purpose. Being from Texas, to combat this issue with I think I fit in well. Texas mobile jetpacks and they probably has slightly more helped, but were not a fix all Baptist churches per capita to the issue. Ensuring that broadband is accessible to all so I can check the box on Greene County residents will values and morals. Ron Paul ensure that we are moving in was my congressman and I’m further to the right than the right direction keepthe average Republican. I’m ing up with the minimum requirements to function and also a major 2nd amendment advocate; certified thrive as a community. NRA, USCCA, and TN State Arrowood: Competition Firearms instructor. I used a is the bedrock of capitalism. vacation day a couple weeks As it now stands, we do not back and my family traveled have competition driving to Nashville and spent the ingenuity within our county day at Tennessee Firearms when it comes to high-speed Association/Gun Owners internet. Comcast/Xfinity have a corner on the internet of America Lobby Day. We spoke directly with Rep. Damarket. Other cable service providers are not interested vid Hawk and Senator Steve in coming in, building out the Southerland about important new infrastructure required issues. I have been attend-

in History and a bachelor’s degree in mass communication, both from ETSU. A former staff writer at The Greeneville Sun, Early ran unsuccessfully for the Tusculum City Commission in 2020. He is married to Kristen Early, a former associate editor at The Greeneville Sun.

SCOTT Eric Scott, 56, was born in Greeneville and has lived a majority of his life in Greene County. His wife Leslie Scott is the General Manager at Pizza Inn.

ing county commissioner meetings for about 6 months and researched history/records back over 8 years. My skills and experience equip me very well for the duties of County Commissioner. I do not have an axe to grind with anyone currently in office. I don’t work for or have any relatives employed by the government in any way. The only effect the government has on my finances is taking way too much in taxes. It is my belief that normal citizens who work in private enterprise and foot the bills should be deciding where the money gets spent. Peters: I have enjoyed serving on the Commission for the past eight years and would appreciate the opportunity to continue that service. Most people don’t realize how dire the financial condition of our county was in 2014 when we literally had to borrow money to make payroll, and I am proud to have been a part of that turnaround. But there’s more work left to do. Murray: There are multiple people out of work and multiple jobs to be had. We need better communication of what is needed in each area and how to get these people to work. We need to work smarter, not harder. We need to use our funds wisely, and if that means spending it on our work force and providing opportunities to the lowest class to the highest, everyone wins in the end; people are at work bettering themselves and their family, and businesses are prospering. Of course our drug issue is and unfortunately will always be an issue, but again, I truly feel this comes back to having the proper opportunities available to our community and better education on how to keep our citizens prosperous. I plan to serve the people with integrity and honesty. My goals are to provide our schools with a safe learning environment, to work with our school leaders to better our educational system and this will in turn aid in economic growth for our county. I am not seeking to raise any taxes or fees unless necessary to fund raises for our EMS, Fire, and Police staff, funding our volunteer organizations, etc. The people are what make Greene County great and it is my position to be a voice for the people and help find the opportunities that await them. I will be happy to answer any questions or concerns through my Facebook account. Feel free to message me and I will get back to you in a timely manner. Arrowood: Another area I want to tackle is healthcare. We are so limited within our jurisdiction, but we can petition the state, including our own local represen-

They have five children and five grandchildren. He is a member of East Side Baptist Church. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Pensacola Christian College in 1989. After graduating from college, he worked for a number of years in banking and financial planning. His employers have included First Tennessee Bank, Bank of Greeneville and Horace Mann Co. During that time he also worked for 13 years as an auxiliary patrolman for the police department. He now works

full time at the Greeneville Police Department as a detective. He has not held or run for any political office in the past.

tatives, to provide us the help to deal with the issue. I want the state to remove restrictions and allow more competition between health care systems. Many people within Greene County have voiced a deep concern about Ballad Health. While they are a private company that we have limited power over, the government protects them from any competition by requiring government permission to move into an area or to expand. My family had to look into some major medical procedures within

the past few years. What I found is that the cost of the procedures at Ballad facilities were much more expensive than other facilities outside of the Ballad service area. Now, I do not have anything personal against Ballad. But I do understand government does not know better than the people what businesses are needed in a given area. And why should government protect who is already there instead of allowing the people to have choice as to which they want to support?The truth is Certificate of Need

KIKER Jan Kiker, 60, has a Bachelor of Science degree in elementary education and business education from East Tennessee State University, a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of Tennessee and an EdS from Lincoln Memorial University. She began teaching in the

Greene County School System at age 32. She currently teaches business and computer classes at North Greene High School where she has taught the past 28 years. She will be retiring in May 2023. She has been married to Eric Kiker for 40 years. She was previously elected as County Commissioner for three terms from 2002-2014.

QUILLEN Robin D. Quillen, 63, has lived in Greene County SEE DISTRICT ON PAGE 12

laws went into effect as a way of helping control costs and helping consumers. Federal law requiring CONs in each state lasted only twelve years and was repealed because these laws did not help. Tennessee has maintained a CON law, which directly hurts our area. Studies have shown that states with CON laws have higher costs and fewer options, directly harming the taxpayers and patients. I plan to offer a resolution to send to Nashville asking our state leaders to remove the CON law.

I have represented your county in the nation's largest opioid litigation, now I want to represent you as judge. I have been a practicing attorney for sixteen years, in East Tennessee. During this time, I was appointed to serve as the Child Support Magistrate for the Third Judicial District. I have been honored to grow my practice in the Third Judicial District, as well as across the nation. I have been named Greene County's Best Attorney for the past three consecutive years, and my firm has been named the best law firm for 202 I . I am licensed to practice law in every court in the state of Tennessee and have been admitted to the United States Supreme Court. I have been honored to practice with some of the best litigators in the nation, especially in the last seven years, in the opioid litigation. I currently represent fourteen counties in upper East Tennessee, including the four counties I am running for as Circuit Court Judge, being Hawkins, Hamblen, Greene and Hancock. Through this litigation, I have had the opportunity to also work in several courts around the nation, and see what works and what doesn't. This is the reason I am running for Circuit Court Judge, because I care about our community. I have been a member of the Republican Party since graduating from college. I believe it is a privilege to serve the community and have been an active member in the Greene County and Hamblen County Anti-Drug coalitions. I am a member of several civic organizations, including NRA and Gun Owner's of America, and I value my right to bear arms. I grew up with very humble beginnings. I grew up on a farm, in rural Hawkins County. My mother taught school for 34 years in Greene County, and my father was a rural mail carrier for over 30 years. Growing up on a farm, I learned the value of hard work and dedication, and God has allowed me the privilege of being raised by wonderful parents, in a conservative Christian home, with conservative values. I hope to instill this hard work ethic in the position, if elected. Some of my many goals, are to bring back opportunities to our jurisdiction, through court approved federal and state grants. Working along fellow judges, I would like to expand the Third Judicial Drug Court Program to all four counties. Taking this program a step further, I hope to start a Veteran's Drug Court Program, to truly help those that have fought for our country and sacrificed their life to protect ours. I intend to be hard on crime, and ensure that the public remains safe and secure. For these reasons I respectfully ask for your Vote & Support.

Republican Primary May 3, 2022 Paid for and authorized by Friends to Elect Crystal Jessee, Treasurer Lyle Doty

Page 12 • THE



5 Compete In 4th District Commissioner Republican Primary BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER There are five candidates on the ballot for the 4th Commission District commissioner race in the May 3 Republican Primary. The three winners of the Republican primary will join Democratic candidate Amanda Beamer in the Aug. 4 General Election in a four-person race for three seats. Those running in the Republican Primary are William “Bill” Dabbs, Eddie Jennings, Adam Musgrove, Lyle Parton, and Tim Smithson. Dabbs and Parton are incumbents. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

DABBS Bill Dabbs, 64, is a Greeneville High School graduate. He is the CEO of WBD LLC. and managing partner of MD Properties. He is a United States Navy veteran. He was formerly a County Commissioner for the 8th District and is currently a commissioner

William “Bill” Dabbs

Eddie Jennings

for the 4th District which consists of parts of Greeneville and Camp Creek. He is married, and has five children, five grandchildren, and two grandchildren on the way.

two children. He currently works for Greene County Schools at South Greene Middle School as a United States History teacher. It is his eighth year in education, having taught previously at Camp Creek before consolidation. He grew up in Greene County and graduated from South Greene before attending East Tennessee State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice and history. He then attended Tusculum University for a Masters of Arts in education. He has management experience in the restaurant industry locally and in the Knoxville area. He has managed a number of locations that each averaged around $1 million in annual sales. He has managed approximately 30 employees, meeting

a budget and keeping labor and other costs in check. Additionally, he is active in the community as a member of the Camp Creek VFD.

for this office to make life better for the citizens in our county. I love this county and the people in it. We need many more improvements here so that the lives of the people here are improved. Cobble: I am running for office to help maintain the quality of life we all enjoy. Carpenter: I am blessed with great mentors from my education, family, church, and friends. Their influences have taught me to give back and to honorably serve. With the passing of Commissioner Doc Bryant, I was asked to seek the appointment. I was supported in this process by some outstanding Commissioners. When another received the appointment, I was encouraged to run in the election. The Greene County Highway Department, the Sheriff’s Office, and EMS have had some difficulty retaining employees as they leave for higher wages elsewhere. Would you support a pay increase for these personnel or do you have another solution? Please explain why you would or would not support a pay increase. Early: Law enforcement and emergency personnel perform critical and, in many instances, life-saving work. They deserve to be paid a livable wage that’s competitive with surrounding counties. Given the nation’s soaring inflation, as well as the already high cost of homes, land, and gas, I would not at this time support a tax increase to raise those wages. That seems irresponsible. However, I certainly back thoroughly examining the county’s overall budget to find ways to properly compensate these important employees. In my experience, money is not the sole reason that a person stays or leaves a place of employment. Department morale, the appropriate work/life balance, and other motivations can make or break an employee’s desire to stay on. Examining those areas as a county commission could also be helpful. Scott: The problem of higher wages elsewhere is always going to be an issue. But one thing we must keep in mind is that many

times employees elsewhere will have a higher cost of living than we do in Greene County which can offset those higher wages. However, it appears that raising wages and or benefits is an issue that many communities are going to have to deal with and our county will be no different. I believe that our employees should be compensated at a level that is fair to both the employees and to the taxpayers who pay their salaries. I am in support of working to make sure that we achieve that fairness to both parties. Kiker: I would support a pay increase for the Highway Department, the Sheriff’s Office and EMS. It is imperative to the well-being of our county that the county retain and hire competent employees. Competitive wages are the best way to achieve this. With the continued good management of the county’s budget, I believe we can increase pay and remain well within the budget and give pay increases without a tax increase. Quillen: I do support a pay increase for many of the county employees. We are now working on ways to bring that to fruition. Cobble: I support pay increases necessary to fund the positions. I do not support tax increases unnecessarily. It is very important that Greene county be debt free as soon as possible to maintain a low cost of living for citizens. Carpenter: I would like to see the median pay for alike job titles of other counties and municipalities around us to make sure that Greene County is competitive in attracting employees. I would also be interested in researching exit interviews of prior employees to determine if the sole reason for their leave was due to better pay. If these factors prove the need for a competitive salary, I would support a pay increase however, I would not support this increase through a higher tax rate. Broadband internet has become an important part of the 21st Century economy. Should Greene County invest funds to help expand broadband services? Why or why not?

JENNINGS Eddie Jennings, 70, is a South Greene High School graduate. He was a truck driver for 40 years and farmer. He previously served on the County Commission from 20142018 representing the 4th District. He is also a United States Army Reserve veteran. He has lived in Greeneville the majority of his life.

MUSGROVE Adam Musgrove, 34, and his wife Ashley have

Early: I believe strongly in making sure taxpayCONTINUED FROM PAGE 11 er money is spent and budgeted wisely. Unfortunately, you don’t have all of her life. She graduto look far to find other ated from Chuckey Doak counties and communities High School in 1976 and that have mismanaged attended Walters State funds. Ensuring financial Community College. She discipline is the main reaworked as a dental assisson I am running. I, like tant for a few years. She many other Greene County then worked at Greene residents, was deeply County Schools as a teaching assistant. She and bothered by some of the most recent audit findings her husband own South of our county government. State Contractors and Many offices are runhave operated it for over 30 years. She has been a ning smoothly, and those County Commissioner for departments deserve our 12 years. thanks. Some of the finds, however, were serious. As a county commissioner, I COBBLE will be a consistent voice for government efficiency Jason Cobble, 50, is the and transparency. Finally, self-employed owner of By-pass Lawn and Garden. I want to see Greene CounHe is also a farmer. He has ty prosper. I believe I have a track record of working an associate’s degree. He well with others, listening has served two previous and problem solving. I will terms as a County Comtake those skills and work missioner and is seeking hard for the people of third. Greene County. Scott: It is my belief CARPENTER that we are privileged to live in a great part of Dillon Carpenter, 28, the country and enjoy a was born and raised in quality of life that many Greene County by his others do not enjoy. We father, Robert Carpenare fortunate to have ter and his mother and reasonable taxes, small stepfather, David and numbers of violent crimes Alison Burns. His paterand a small town feel. nal grandparents are the We have jobs available late Clarence, a long-time county commissioner, and to those who are seeking them and a quality educaRachael Carpenter. His tional system. Obviously maternal grandparents there are areas that can are the late Earl Gass and be improved and I intend Rosella Gass. His father’s to be part of a common family owned a farm in sense approach to that western Greene county. improvement. We curHis mother’s family are entrepreneurs. He was rently live in uncertain educated in the Greentimes which threaten the security and prosperous eville City School System, future which we have so graduating in 2012 from long enjoyed. My desire Greeneville High School. When he was 17 years old, is to help our county thrive and prosper while he joined the Greeneville maintaining its small Emergency and Rescue Squad volunteering for the town atmosphere so that the next generation can next four years. He then enjoy the same standard joined the Mosheim Volof living. unteer Fire Department Kiker: Upon the vacanserving as captain and cy created by the death of assistant chief. He served as treasurer for the Greene a former commissioner, I County Association of Vol- was chosen by the majority of my peers on the current unteer Fire Departments County Commission to fill where he managed wheel the vacant third district tax revenue for distribuseat. My many years of tion to the departments experience as a County and other budget duties. He attended East Tennes- Commissioner has presee State University where pared me to serve in this role. I would like to conhe was an engineering student. During a summer tinue to serve the people break from school, he took in the third district, which are the precincts of Doak a position with a farm. Why are you running and Tusculum View. Quillen: I am running for this office?


Adam Musgrove

PARTON Lyle Parton, 71, is seeking his third term as 4th District Commissioner. He and his wife have owned and operated Partons Electric-Heating & Air Conditioning for over 50 years. He was employed at Greeneville Shipbuilders for 19 years where he was a sheetmetal fitter and supervisor. He was a certified nuclear welder. He currently holds state licenses as a Mechanical Contractor, HVAC, Building Contractor, Electrical Contractor and Plumbing Contractor. He is a

Lyle Parton

Tim Smithson

high school graduate and has attended numerous training and vocational programs throughout his career. He is a lifetime farmer in Greene County having worked in tobacco, hay, corn and currently raising beef cattle. He is married to Doris Darnell-Parton and they reside in the South Greene Community and attend Victory Church of God.

general manager of Washington Farmers Cooperative in Jonesborough. He is also a lifelong farmer in the Camp Creek community. He has been married to his wife Angie for almost 42 years and they have two daughters who along with their families also live in Greene County. Angie is retired as a teacher after spending 30 years with the Greene County School System. This is Smithson’s first attempt to run for a political office. Why are you running for this office? Dabbs: I have represented the 4th District for the past four years and the 8th District for ten years. I believe I have unfinished business for Greene County. Examples would be to

SMITHSON Tim Smithson, 63, is a lifelong resident of Greene County. He graduated from South Greene High School and The University of Tennessee. He retired just over two years ago after spending over 39 years in the agricultural supply business. The last 12 years of his career was spent as

Early: For most people in 2022, the internet is more than a convenience. It is an absolute necessity for their job, education and a variety of other activities. People use it to book medical appointments and track important documents. I support investing appropriate funds in expanding broadband services across Greene County. Having broadband access will not only improve quality of life, but it will be a tool that Greene County can market to potential employers that are interested in locating in East Tennessee. However, I think the taxpayers should have the option to opt out of any sort of payment. In other words, if someone does not utilize the service, I don’t think they should have to pay for it. Scott: Yes, broadband is an important part of the economy and people’s lives. It has become an integral part of everyday life and has an effect on education, work opportunities, entertainment, and most businesses. It appears that there will be opportunities which may allow broadband expansion to be a consideration in the near future. I think it would be a great advancement to expand broadband if it is feasible within the budget constraints of the county. Kiker: Absolutely yes. I was part of the historical vote that took place during the February 2022 meeting to begin this endeavor. With more people working at home and some students being home schooled, it is more important than ever that Greene County have Internet and that the residents of Greene County have options for different Internet Services. If elected to continue to serve, I will support our Broadband initiatives until every citizen and student that desires Internet services, has it. Quillen: Broadband is close to my heart. We need this for the education of our students and the improvement of our work places. Yes, we should absolutely invest in this. Cobble: I am still studying this issue. Carpenter: Greene County is dependent on one provider for broadband services therefore,


we need to expand our options. I would explore the availability of grants to fund this service. A brief additional statement, if desired Early: It has been a pleasure to run for office, and I will stand for fiscal responsibility, government transparency, and the promotion of job growth. I humbly ask for your vote. Scott: I appreciate the opportunity to share a little about myself with the people of Greene County. If I am elected, I can promise to do my best to represent the people in my district and Greene County in a conservative and honorable manner. I will work to improve our county while keeping my sights on the future that we leave to the next generation. I am Eric Scott and I would appreciate your vote. Kiker: I am Jan Kiker. I am currently serving as Third District County Commissioner. If you vote at Doak or Tusculum View, I would truly appreciate your vote for Third District Commissioner. Quillen: I have five grandsons who live here. My goal is to make their lives better and hope that they find employment here and continue to live here. I am fortunate to have two sons and daughtersin-law who live and work here. I’d love to have more young people establishing lives here than having to move away for good jobs. I would appreciate your vote and support for Third District Commissioner once again. Cobble: Cobble had no additional statement. Carpenter: Thank you for the opportunity to address these questions. I value the lessons through life of working hard, working together, being responsible, using my time to get the most done, being loyal and devoted, earning respect and trust. These lessons have formed the person I became as a leader and a volunteer to better the area I live and work in. My platform is “Your Voice is My Vote” because it is not my opinion that I seek to represent but, the needs and concerns of our community. It is for these reasons, I ask the citizens in the Tusculum View and Doak voting precincts for their vote.

Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE



lower or eliminate taxes and bring economic development to Greene County. Jennings: To voice the people’s opinions and concerns. I will look closely after how the taxpayers’ money is spent, and want to make things better instead of worse for the people in Greene County. I want to make Greene County great again. I want to make sure Greene County citizen’s voices are heard. I’m for smaller government and less taxes. I’m a true conservative Republican. I’m a voice for my constituents and voters in the county. Musgrove: I’m not a politician, I’m a father who is concerned about my children’s future and that of my community and nation. I’m running to make sure I can look my children in the eye and tell them I did all that I could to preserve the values and principles that made our nation great. The last few years have proved to me that if we want our children and future generations to enjoy freedom and prosperity, we cannot remain inactive and apathetic. As president Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation from extinction. We didn’t pass it in the blood stream to our children. It must be fought for and defended and handed on to them so they can do the same. Or one day we will tell our children and children’s children what is was once like in America when men were free.” The theme of my campaign is Defend Liberty Locally. I believe that we as a nation are at a critical crossroads. We need to defend our values and ideals at every level of government. That starts here on the local level. Parton: I am seeking this office to continue the work toward accomplishing the goals this commission has undertaken. My goal has been to keep spending down and and maintain our property taxes without increases. We currently have a good fund balance for operating the county government and do not see a need for any increase in the near future. Smithson: I have always had a keen interest in local government and have tried to stay informed of what is happening within our local governing bodies. Within the past few months at different times I have had a number of friends and neighbors ask me to consider running for county commissioner. After much thought and a lot of prayers I decided this might be a way for me to give back to my

local community. The Greene County Highway Department, the Sheriff’s Office, and EMS have had some difficulty retaining employees as they leave for higher wages elsewhere. Would you support a pay increase for these personnel or do you have another solution? Please explain why you would or would not support a pay increase. Dabbs: I support pay increases for all county employees as long as it doesn’t require the raising of taxes to achieve that goal, and can be done within budget. As for personnel leaving a job in Greene County to pursue a job in another county, the increase in pay would be minimal because of your expenses and the wear and tear on your vehicle. Jennings: Yes. Instead of buying things that we could do without, for example like the hospital and the CCU, and getting our wants instead of needs we should utilize our tax money wisely we could afford to pay a little more without the wasteful spending and any tax increases. Remember the people in Greene county that are not drawing very much retirement are the very ones that built Greene County. Commissioners are the funding body of the county government, but the county government needs to remember that the taxpayers are the funding body of all of Greene County. Money needs to be used wisely. Musgrove: It is my understanding, that Mayor Morrison has initiated a study to be conducted regarding this issue. The study will compare our departments pay and benefits with other counties in the area. This data will help us formulate a sound approach to tackling employee retention and recruitment. In principle, I would support a pay increase in order to keep wages competitive and at pace with the rising inflation. These departments are essential infrastructure for our community. The issue would be sourcing the additional funds without a tax increase. The issue of inflation will continue to be a challenge for both the county and taxpayer’s personal budget. We must seek to grow the tax base through economic development. The focus should be on how to attract industry and business to Greene County. I believe if we promote economic freedom many businesses leaving more restrictive areas of the country could be brought to Greene County. Smith and Wesson recently relocated to Blount County from Massachu-

setts. Greene County can grow, if we promote economic liberty locally. Parton: We, the commissioners, have been studying ways to maintain our employees. We just gave a 5% across the board raise. Each department may need to consider doing an exit interview to determine the reason for employees leaving, it may not always have to do with money. Losing employees is happening in all counties. Raises could possibly be considered if it does not cause a tax increase. Smithson: Since I am not currently a county commissioner and am not privy to much of the financial information that would be necessary to answer this question, I can only give some general thoughts. Dependable, trustworthy, self-motivated employees are the backbone of any business, whether it is a large corporation or small business. County government is no different. Without the proper employees in place we can’t expect our local government offices to operate efficiently. That is where the department heads and the county commission has to work together to provide whatever funds are available to make sure our employees are fairly compensated. Broadband internet has become an important part of the 21st Century economy. Should Greene County invest funds to help expand broadband services? Why or why not? Dabbs: Yes. There are grants and other programs available that can help Greene County achieve the goal of broadband for all Greene Countians who do not have that service. Jennings: Instead of asking the commissioners and the county government, we should ask the taxpayers in the county for their input. Musgrove: I believe the investment of county funds in broadband internet is a sound one. The investment in broadband will provide much needed competition among internet service providers. Many places in the county are limited to one provider. This situation creates in effect a monopoly and many times results in subpar performance and inflated prices. The increased competition will force current providers to improve service or be replaced. The other issue this investment would address is lack of availability. This issue was highlighted to me during 2020 when the school system had extended periods of virtual instruction. Many students didn’t have access to the internet at home. I listened to many parents explain that a

TURNOUT THE VOTE 2022 PRI ARY I FORMATION Election Day May 03, 2022


ment, if desired. Dabbs: I would like to thank all who have supported me over the years and I ask for your vote once again. If anyone has any questions or concerns feel free to contact me. Jennings: I would truly appreciate to speak for the citizens’ voice and listen to them. I would like for the county government to talk to them on any of the issues including those mentioned here. We should turn the county back over to the taxpayers and listen to their concerns and requests. I would appreciate your vote and I am running on my previous record. The reason i have not been out and about in District 4 recently is because i have been undergoing radiation treatments. Come the latter part of April, I will be back out campaigning again. Musgrove: I believe the job of government is to recognize and protect the natural rights of each citizen. Government governs best closest to the people. The Federal Government has assumed authority in size and scope far beyond its constitutional mandate. States and local governments for generations have acquiesced and given away authority that belongs closer to the people. This has created a bureaucracy that exceeds the bounds of a Constitutional Republic. If we are to pass liberty to future generations, We The People have to become active in the restoration of the Republic. Local and state governments have to assert their historical and constitutional authority. Liberty can and must be defended. In Greene County let’s do our part and Defend Liberty Locally. Parton: I would like to thank the people in Greene County’s 4th District for electing me for the past two terms. I hope I have done a good job representing them on the Commission. I would like to ask for their support and vote for another term. Smithson: I am a lifelong resident of Greene County and I am committed to our conservative, Christian values. I am a 40 year member of the Camp Creek Ruritan Club, a member of the Board of Directors of Rural Health Services Consortium and a Deacon of Harris Memorial Free Will Baptist Church. I have almost 40 years experience in business and am very familiar with budgeting, finances, and making the hard decisions that are necessary to keeping a business profitable. I would like to use those skills to represent the citizens of the 4th Commission District. Your vote will be appreciated. Thank you!

SHERIFF Paid for by committee to Elect Andy Barham


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service provider was not available and to receive service would require them to pay thousands to have a cable ran to their property. The investment would allow Greeneville Light and Power to expand service to these citizens. Broadband Internet is critical infrastructure for the 21st century and will help to attract business and residents to our community. Johnson City and Washington County have a remote worker campaign that offers 5000 dollars and other benefits to workers who relocate to the area. Greene County can attract workers here in a similar fashion if we have reliable quality broadband internet. Finally, I support the investment because it would be self-sustaining. The initial investment would be combined with grants and Greeneville Light and Power would be able to provide internet service through monthly fees to customers. We need to be good stewards of every tax dollar. However, if an investment will promote economic development and growth it will pay off in the long run. Government must promote policies that foster growth and unleash the free market. Parton: Broadband internet is greatly needed in Greene County. We trust that this issue will be resolved when up and running. The broadband issue was passed at our March meeting that granted Greeneville Power Board the authority to proceed. Hopefully there will be grant money available to offset the expense in setting up broadband service. Smithson: Broadband internet is a vital part of our world today. A good, dependable internet connection is imperative to our local businesses and industries, our local school systems, our governmental agencies, our healthcare providers, etc. With so many people working from home now, a dependable internet connection could be the determining factor as to whether they can continue to live in Greene County. Again, I am not currently privy to financial information and therefore cannot accurately answer this question. However, I do think there are a number of resources that are currently and will be available in the future such as state and federal grants that need to be pursued to help with this process. I am pleased that our locally controlled Greeneville Light and Power System has made the commitment to be a broadband provider in Greene County and hope that every effort is made to make this service available to each and every citizen in a timely manner. A brief additional state-






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5 Candidates Run For 3 5th District Commissioner Seats In Republican Primary BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER Five candidates are looking to fill three seats in the 5th Commission District in the May 3 Republican Primary. The three winners of the Republican primary will join an Independent candidate, Dana Gosnell Wilds, in the Aug. 4 General Election. Those running in the Republican Primary trying to move on to the general election are Gary Shelton, Jeremy Michael Roberts, Lloyd “Hoot” Bowers, Pamela Carpenter, and Lynn Fillers. Shelton, Bowers and Carpenter are incumbents. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

SHELTON Gary Shelton, 67, was born and raised in Greene County. He graduated from South Greene High School and has a Bachelor of Science degree in business from East Tennessee State University. He is currently employed at Greene Farmers CO-OP where he has worked for 48 years.

ROBERTS Jeremy Michael Roberts, 38, grew up in Greeneville as a farmer from a young age to now. He attended Nolachuckey Elementary School and graduated from South Greene High School in 2002. He attended Walters State Community College and obtained his EMT certification. He was a member of the South Greene Fire Department for 21 years. During that time, he also worked in construction, millwright, agriculture, management, bus driving, and ownership. He has been a bus driver for the Greene County School System both full-time and part-time for the past six years. He owns a lawn care business called M&M Complete and with his wife, Jennifer Roberts, owns Southland Equipment. He and his wife have four children.

BOWERS Lloyd “Hoot “ Bowers is a life resident of Greene County. He was educated in the Greene County School

Gary Shelton

Jeremy Michael Roberts

of fuel and groceries, I don’t think we need the added burden of a property tax increase. Roberts: Running for 5th District Greene County Commissioner was not just a “spur of the moment” idea for me. My kids played a big role in my decision because I want their future to be the best it can be here. As CARPENTER previously mentioned, I Pamela Carpenter resides have grown up here all my life. Greene County is in the Cedar Creek area of the 5th District, the district a wonderful county, but there are always ways to that contains Greeneville improve and strive for Middle School, Debusk, better, just like I strive to Nolichuckey, and Sourth do for my businesses. With Greene High School poll that being said, I believe a locations. She attended person should do their part Walters State Community to make Greene County the College and worked for best it can be. Greene Farmers CO-OP Bowers: I seek re-elecfor about 40 years. She has served on the County tion to the Commission Commission previously for because I love our county. two terms representing the I have no personal agenda. 5th District. My only agenda is the best interest of our county. Carpenter: One of the FILLERS main attributes of Greene Lynn Fillers, 56, was born County, in my opinion, is the picturesque views and and raised on a farm in Greene County. He received friendly people that reside here. I have three children his elementary school eduand eight grandchildren, cation at DeBusk and high one of which is a teacher for school education at South Greene, graduating in 1984. the Greeneville City Schools He graduated from Tennes- System, one is studying to be a nurse, and one is see Tech University with pursuing a teaching degree a Bachelor of Science in agricultural science in 1989. at Tusculum University. All either work or plan on During his younger years, working and supporting he worked on the farm and Greene County. I, Pamela working in construction with his dad. He has worked Carpenter, promise to be a good steward of your as a vocational agriculture money spent for the needs teacher, County Extension of Greene County. agent, manager of a FarmFillers: I feel that with er’s Co-op, and he currently my previous experience, works as a shipping clerk. I can make some positive He is a political newcomer and this is his first bid for a changes for the people of Greene County and Greenpolitical office. Why are you running eville. for this office? The Greene County Shelton: I am running Highway Department, for office to serve the people the Sheriff’s Office, of the 5th District. I have and EMS have had represented the 5th District some difficulty retainfor the last four years. I am ing employees as they getting a lot of questions leave for higher wages on my position on property elsewhere. Would you taxes. I feel we should keep support a pay increase our current tax rate as it for these personnel or is now. With our current do you have another inflation rate and the price solution? Please ex-

System and is a graduate of East Tennessee State University with a degree in criminal justice. He is retired from State of Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission. He has previously served on the Greene County Board of Education and Greene County Commission.

Lloyd “Hoot” Bowers

Pamela Carpenter

Lynn Fillers

plain why you would or would not support a pay increase. Shelton: Regarding pay raises for employees, I have no problem with giving raises. We have had some pay increases come before the Commission and I have voted in favor. Roberts: Greene County has great employees at the Greene County Highway Department, the Sheriff’s Office, and EMS. The pay increase should be rewarded accordingly by the department heads. If these employees are doing their job well and correctly, they should be rewarded. It is hard to keep great people in these sacrificing positions if their employment is not competitive with wages and benefits. In many situations, all the employees from these three departments sacrifice their lives daily for Greene County. In return, they should be paid in respect of their value to our county. Bowers: Some Departments such as the Highway Department, the EMS, and the Sheriff’s Department are having problems retaining employees. I would support pay increases to enable the county to retain these professional employees. Carpenter: I feel that the Sheriff’s Department, EMS, and Highway Department are three of the most important offices in Greene County. The Sheriff’s Department helps us to live worry free knowing that we are protected at all times. The EMS provides us with around the clock care and makes us feel reassured that our families can receive emergency medical treatment that can be life saving. The Highway Department provides roads for our residents to travel to and from safely. I would definitely support raises for these departments as they are instrumental to the residents of Greene County. Fillers: I believe that the county employees need to be paid comparable salaries in order to keep the quality

employees that this county deserves. However the taxpayers don’t want taxes raised to support the needs of the county. If this can be achieved without a tax increase, I fully support pay raises for county employees. Broadband internet has become an important part of the 21st Century economy. Should Greene County invest funds to help expand broadband services? Why or why not? Shelton: I think we need broadband county-wide. Greeneville Light and Power is going to start the process of providing this service to the whole county. I will do what I can as commissioner to assist Greeneville Light and Power in completing this project. Roberts: With the education system pursuing technology in the learning environment, it is needed to help the younger generations to be successful. In years past, Greene County was leaders in tobacco and dairy with the companies like Magnavox, PET Dairy, and many other great companies. Greene County needs to become competitive with different things in today’s world with technology being one of those. If we ever want to see Greene County continue to be a top-ranking county in Tennessee, we need to get more technologically involved. With that being said, if broadband internet can help us do that, we should invest funding for it especially if grants are applicable. Bowers: I strongly support broadband internet. Carpenter: Broadband allows all homes to have the opportunity to have internet services which is a crucial component that almost everyone needs, especially students that rely heavily on internet usage to complete school work. Fillers: Although this is becoming a necessity for daily life, I do not believe that the county needs to invest any funds for broad-

band in the county. From what I have read, Greeneville Light and Power is going to undertake this for the county and they need to provide the necessary funds for this project. A brief additional statement, if desired Shelton: I would to thank everyone for their support the last four years. The last two years have been stressful for the whole community. it is good to see everyone out and about. COVID hopefully is going away. I would like to ask everyone in the 5th District for their support and their vote Thanks again for your support. Roberts: If elected, I will make every decision with a commonsense approach. I will do my best to represent the residents of the 5th District of Greene County with their values and concerns. I would certainly appreciate your vote as a 5th District Greene County Commissioner. Bowers: I proudly served our country in the United States Army serving a tour of duty in Vietnam. I would be honored to continue serving as a County Commissioner. The precincts I’m running in are Middle School, Debusk, South Greene, and Nolachuckey. Carpenter: The love I have for Greene County makes me yearn to help this area shine and show all of its true beauty. I believe we must all do our share to achieve what we wish to see happen for the betterment of Greene County. Thank you for your vote and your support of Greene County. It is my pleasure to serve you as the 5th District Commissioner. Fillers: There are positive activities happening for Greene County now and I hope to expand on this. I will have an “open door” policy if elected to this position to the community in which I will serve and strive to do what is best for our Greene County home.

5 Candidates Run For 3 Seats In 7th Commission District BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER Five candidates are looking to fill three seats in the 7th Commission District in the May 3 Republican Primary. The three winners of the Republican primary will run unopposed in the Aug. 4 General Election. Those running for the three seats are Paul Burkey, Lisa Bowman Anderson, Teddy Lawing, Terry “Mike” Musick, and Robert Pleasant. Burkey, Lawing and Musick are incumbents. The candidates recently responded to questions from The Greeneville Sun about their campaigns. Early voting begins on April 13 and runs through April 28. The Republican Party primary will be held on May 3 and the general election will be Aug. 4.

BURKEY Paul Burkey, 62, of

Paul Burkey

Lisa Bowman Anderson

Teddy Lawing

Terry “Mike” Musick

Robert Pleasant

Greeneville, attended Glenwood Elementary School and graduated from West Greene High School in 1977. He graduated Centre College in 1981 with a Bachelor of Arts in government. He attended Naval Postgraduate School and received a master’s degree in national security affairs in 1987. He retired from the United States Navy as a captain after a 27-year career as a naval intelligence officer. Burkey

is a Cold War, Gulf War, and War on Terrorism veteran. Since returning to live in Greene County in 2008, he has worked as a business manager for a contracting firm, Avantus-Federal. Through his work he provides advisory and assistance services to the Department of Defense and other agencies. He currently serves as a 7th District Greene County Commissioner, first being elected in 2014

and reelected in 2018. He previously served on the Greeneville-Greene County Airport Authority.

the 1980s and 1990s, and co-owner of Greeneville Machine & Iron Works. She is a former board member of the Greene County Humane Society. She owns a small farm, and has lived in the 7th District for 50 years, and before that she lived in the Town of Greenville. She has no past political involvement.

currently serving as a county commissioner for the 7th District of Greene County (Greeneville High School and Glenwood voting locations). He grew up in the Sunnyside community and attended Sunnyside Elementary School and then graduated from South Greene High School. He attended Walters State Community College and obtained an

ANDERSON Lisa Bowman Anderson, 61, is a graduate of Greeneville High School and attended Middle Tennessee State University. She is currently the service manager of Gateway Nissan in Greeneville. She was involved in the real estate business in

LAWING Teddy Lawing, is


Saturday, April 9, 2022 • THE



Numerous Candidates Running Unopposed In Primary And General Election BY SPENCER MORRELL STAFF WRITER There are a number of positions that will see Republican candidates running unopposed in their May 3 primary contests, meaning their races are basically already decided as they will also run unopposed in the August general except in the case of a write-in candidate. Douglas Jenkins is running unopposed in the Republican primary for 3rd Judicial District chancellor, while Alex Pearson and Beth Boniface are running unopposed for the positions of 3rd Judicial District Circuit Court judge Part I and Part

III respectively. In the Republican primary, Kenneth Bailey is running unopposed for General Sessions judge, John Dugger is running unopposed for 3rd Judicial District Criminal Court judge, and Dan Armstrong is running unopposed for 3rd Judicial district attorney general. Many Republicans are also running unopposed for local Greene County offices. Nathan Holt is running unopposed in the May 3 Republican primary for the office of county trustee, and Kevin Swatsell is running unopposed for the office of road superintendent. A Republican is also running unopposed for every


Greene County Constable seat in the May 3 Republican primary. Travis Dearstone is running in the 1st Constable District, Wayne Wilhoit in the 2nd Constable District, Kenneth Bitner in the 3rd Constable District, William Parton in the 4th Constable District, Freddie Sams in the 5th Constable District, Matthew Brobeck in the 6th Constable District, and Timothy Vonglis in the 7th Constable District. The races for Greene County School Board positions are also uncontested with four Republicans and one independent running. Those running unopposed in the May 3 Republican

ing, it is here now and it offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to really improve Greene CounCONTINUED FROM PAGE 14 ty if we use them wisely where AAS in public safety and an AS they can have the greatest and in criminal justice. He started longest lasting impact. In adwork at Greene Valley Developdition to those funds, both the mental Center as a technician, County and the schools will rewent to work for the Greene tire several bonds over the next County Sheriff’s Office as a four years. That’s sort of like transport/corrections officer, paying off your mortgage and and then went to the Greeneville freeing up resources. Just like Police Department where he paying off your mortgage, the served as patrolman, detective temptation would be to squansergeant, detective lieutenant der those freed up resources on and patrol captain. He returned short term things. And just like to the Greene County Sheriff’s after paying off a mortgage, it Office where he currently serves would be wise to apply those as a School Resource Officer at savings in the best way possible. South Greene High School and a So, I would like to offer good lieutenant supervising the SRO stewardship as we spend this division of officers assigned money by keeping all the projto Greene County Schools. He ects for the various departments serves on the Law Enforcement aligned to a common vision, so Committee, Personnel Policies that they work together for the Committee, 911-Central Disbetterment of the citizens in our patch Board, Greeneville-Greene County and especially my 7th District constituents. County Library Board, PurAnderson: I am running for chasing Committee and Animal this office to be able to listen to, Control Committee. and respond, and represent my whole district. I would like to MUSICK have quarterly meetings, with my district, so everyone is up to Terry “Mike” Musick, 48, is date on the budgets, and other married to Diana. He grew up in the Mosheim community and issues impacting our county, and have question and answer sesgraduated from West Greene High School in 1993. He then sions, including all other Comleft for basic training in the missioners, if they will attend. United States Army. He attendLawing: When I first ran for ed Walters State Community County Commissioner, I felt College in both criminal justice that it was a great way to give and paralegal studies. He served back to the community, and still in Operation Iraqi Freedom do. After serving my first term, 1-2. He retired after 24 years of there are several things that I military service, and is currently would like to continue to work the commander of the VFW Post on and help solve some prob1990. He works for the Greene lems that we are facing or will County Sheriff’s Department. He be facing. Since elected, I have currently serves on the Mosheim attended every County CommisPlanning Commission and was sion meeting with the excepappointed in January to the 7th tion of one when I was sick. I District County Commission seat have faithfully attended every that he is seeking to be elected committee meeting that I am asto in May. signed. I read every packet prior to commission meetings and am prepared to vote on the issues at PLEASANT hand with an understanding of Robert Pleasant, 47, has a the issue at hand. GED and graduate certificate Musick: To continue to serve from Full Sail University. He my county and constituents of has a background in security the 7th district. and worked as a Tennessee Pleasant: I’m running to be state prison guard in 2001, in a voice for the Greene County addition to having an unarmed residents. I will listen to the license to help a private investi- voters and vote the way I think will help all voters. Also, we gator. He was in the Tennessee need more animal welfare laws State Guard and worked for in the county and other things. Greeneville City Schools at one time as a custodian. He mounted I will vote the way I think voters would want me to and will listen an unsuccessful bid for Constato all their needs and concerns. ble 4 years ago. He’s currently The Greene County Higha commercial loan broker and working to get his license for way Department, the Sherresidential brokering. iff’s Office, and EMS have Why are you running for had some difficulty retainthis office? ing employees as they leave Burkey: I am running for for higher wages elsewhere. re-election because I think I can Would you support a pay apply a lifetime of leadership increase for these personexperience to connect vision nel or do you have another with practical, realistic exesolution? Please explain cution for moving the County why you would or would not forward in a unified way. I support a pay increase. especially want to represent Burkey: Our Sheriff’s Dethe interests of my constitupartment, Road Department ents in the 7th district. I am and EMS system, along with pro-growth and pro-education. all the other County Divisions, The two go hand in hand as require well-trained and highly education is the foundation of motivated personnel. In generprosperity and prosperity is al, our employees are already motivation for better educadedicated to serving their fellow tion. In the next four years we citizens. However, in Northwill encounter some important east Tennessee, the market decisions here in Greene County is deciding what the value of that will affect how things go trained, motivated personnel for many years to follow. Due to is. If we want to recruit, hire, COVID, the County has received and retain quality personnel, federal America Recovery Act especially highly trained and (ARP) funding and the schools certified first responders, we have received Elementary and need to compete in that market. Secondary School Emergency If we’re paying below market Relief (ESSER) funding. There prices, we’re going to struggle may be more federal funding to keep good folks. I don’t know available through grants from where that value is exactly, but the State of Tennessee. Regard- based on research we have done over the last couple years, we are less of where you stand on the wisdom of all this federal fund- probably paying in the low end

primary for county school board seats who will not face a challenge in August are: Stacey Franklin for 1st District, Larry Bible for 3rd District, Gary Compton for 5th District, and Mark Rothe for 6th District. Minnie Blankenship Banks will run unopposed for 4th District school board member in the Aug. 4 general election as an independent. The race for one at-large seat on the Town of Greeneville’s School Board will be contested in August. Craig Shepard is running unopposed in the Republican primary for the seat, and he will face independent candidates Thomas Annett and Patsy Barger in the August

of that market. The good news is that we already have compensation improvements underway. COVID relief funds gave us a chance to reward our personnel with stipends that get us in the area of equitable pay and benefits and provide some breathing room to transition that into traditional funding streams in a couple years without raising property taxes to do it. We also need to continue communication to County employees the value of their total compensation in addition to just their take-home pay. Several of our employee benefits are quite a bit better than in surrounding Counties. Anderson: I feel the Highway Dept. budget needs to be analyzed further regarding wages. I am looking forward to becoming more familiar with their Department and wage system. The Sheriff’s Dept. and EMS are both drastically underpaid for what they do. They both face life and death situations for everything they do and perform, and I do support a raise for these departments. Lawing: I serve on the personnel policy committee; we requested a salary study be completed and the full Greene County Commission voted to have it completed. We saw in the study that some county employees were at the lower percentage of their recommended pay, some were about middle way and some were at or above the recommended salary. As we approach the start of the budget process, I hope that we can continue to adjust salaries that are on the lower percentages of their pay level and bring all county employees up to closer where they need to be in their individual pay scale. County employees do have a good benefits package with Health Insurance, Retirement, Health Clinic and other benefits, while some county employees are not paid at the top of the recommended level, with the combination of pay and the benefits package, the commission has to balance what is needed to accomplish the mission of the departments, while understanding the impact on taxpayers. With departments such as EMS, it is hard to find employees as there are only a few young people entering into this profession and with few graduating from EMT and Paramedic programs, the larger better paid cities and counties are getting most of those graduating. I think we are going to have to encourage young people to enter this profession and have some incentive to offer them to stay in our community and work for our EMS. This employee shortage not only effects Greene County, but it is also a regional problem with several cities and counties in the same situation as Greene County. As far as the Sheriff’s Office, when I first graduated high school, I applied for Greeneville Police Department and Greene County Sheriff’s Office and several other agencies in our region. There would be close to a hundred people or so also taking the test for very few positions that were available. Now, when the Greene County Sheriff’s Office gives a corrections or patrol test, there have been fewer than twenty or so qualified people taking the tests. Again, the younger population is not going into this profession and with the state of the national attitude towards law enforcement, why would they? Locally, law enforcement has a very positive community relation and feel they are appreciated but the overall national attitude is negative.

general. A few Democratic candidates are also running unopposed in the Democratic primary on Aug. 4. The local Democratic Party called a primary for all local offices except county and city school board seats, but only three Democratic candidates submitted petitions before the qualifying deadline for three separate Greene County Commission seat races. Darrell Key is running unopposed in the 1st Commissioner District Democratic Primary on May 3. He will face the three winners from the Republican primary race and independent candidate Todd Pierce in the Aug. 4

Musick: I would gladly support a pay increase for these local heroes and would hope to accomplish this without additional tax burdens on the citizens. Pleasant: I would vote for a pay raise for these departments as they are very important for the county to function and for the residents of Greene County. I went through the Johnson City citizen’s police academy and rode two nights with officers so I know first-hand what they go through. Broadband internet has become an important part of the 21st Century economy. Should Greene County invest funds to help expand broadband services? Why or why not? Burkey: There is no downside to expanding affordable broadband access throughout Greene County. COVID forced us to innovate education and business to more on-line platforms. While in-person education and person-to-person business will always be better, many of those telecommunications techniques will continue to provide useful tools for all kinds of these interactions, as long as everyone, or almost everyone, can participate. We also discovered personal advantages in connecting by video-links to distant family and friends in ways we did not imagine before COVID. Even if COVID had not provided the forcing function, the need for widely available, high-capacity broadband was and is quickly becoming mandatory for attracting new businesses and otherwise fostering more economic development. So, Greene County should invest funds to expand broadband services. We have already committed to supporting the two utility companies servicing Greene County by using some of our ARP funding for this purpose and by helping those utilities advocate for more State level grants to accomplish this expansion. Anderson: Broadband internet is an important factor in the majority of lives today, however, I do not feel our County and taxpayers should have to cover the expense of this. I feel this should be left up to the providers of internet services. Lawing: At the March 2022 commission meeting, I was glad to vote in favor of a couple resolutions that I think will greatly enhance Greene County’s broadband internet access. We learned from the Covid-19 epidemic with students being on virtual education that there were several area’s of Greene County that did not have adequate access to broadband internet that would allow students of the Greene County School System access their homework and work online. Hotspot devices had to be provided to some students to allow them to access their education. The current internet provider in Greene County has not been receptive to the broadband needs of Greene County. Several citizens work from home now and I think it’s very important to have a reliable, reasonably priced, all-inclusive broadband internet available to all the citizens of Greene County. Musick: Greene County is already exploring the ideas of broadband expansion and I am excited to be a part of these efforts. Pleasant: I’m all for the broadband in the county as it is a useful tool for many residents and their kids. I come from a county that is lagging behind in the 21st century and it’s sad to see it like that. I think this

General Election. Amanda Beamer is running unopposed in the 4th Commissioner District Democratic Primary. In August, she will compete for one of the three commissioner seats against the three winners of the Republican Primary. Democratic candidate John Waddle is running unopposed in the Democratic primary for one of three seats in the 6th Commissioner District. However, the race drew only two Republicans, Jeffrey Bible and Larkin Clemmer, so it will essentially be decided in May. Waddle, Bible, and Clemmer will fill the three seats barring any write-ins in August.

would be a big benefit for the city and county. It would mean increasing access and usage of broadband infrastructure in rural areas (and the amenities, digital skills, online education, and the job search opportunities that come with it). This would lead to higher property values, increased job and population growth, higher rates of new business formation, and lower unemployment rates. A brief additional statement, if desired Burkey: Being on the County Commission is a team sport. There are 21 Commissioners and no one of us can do things alone. I want to promote actions to tackle tough issues and strive to persuade my fellow Commissioners to do what seems best. A County Government, just like any other form of Government, is a tool the People use to do things. It is designed to do some things well and may not be the right tool for other things. Over the years, long before I was around, we decided that a County Government should provide schools, law enforcement, highway maintenance, solid waste, court functions, and other administrative services. It’s not a good tool for raising our children, taking care of our neighbors, settling simple disagreements peaceably among ourselves, keeping drugs out of our families, and growing faith in our churches and communities. Someone has to do that, but that’s our job as citizens, either as individuals or in non-governmental groups such as Volunteer Fire Departments, civic organizations, issue-specific non-profit organizations, and churches. Although the County can help, when we ask the County Government tool to do something it’s not meant to do, we get inefficiency. So, volunteer more, team with our teachers to make education a continuum between home and school, find something you like to do and give back to your community, join a Volunteer Fire Department. Support these groups with donations as you are able. Pick up the trash along the road near where you live; don’t throw trash along the road where you don’t live. If we all do that enough, we can all share in the resulting prosperity. Anderson: I feel we need more animal control laws within our County. It is great to finally have Animal Control, but something needs to be accomplished to help with the numbers they have to deal with. I also feel we need to address the issues with drug abuse in our County. I am looking forward to representing my district, and appreciate all votes, and appreciate all people for voting, no matter what district, or whom they vote for! Lawing: I appreciate the voters having faith in me in 2018 to elect me to the County Commission and ask that the voters will continue to support me in serving for another term as your representative in the 7th District County Commission seat. Musick: Thanks to everyone supporting me and I look forward to being your servant this next term. Pleasant: I’m an author of a science-fiction book for young adults, as I have two grandkids and one goes to middle school. I’m a storm spotter for the National Weather Service, have a ham radio license, and took weather forecasting classes online at Penn State. I have a Facebook page East TN Weather Alert with 8,000+ followers. I’m really good with computers and built my own.

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How To Register To Vote In Future Elections (90) days prior to the election, and the last day to receive a request is seven (7) days prior to the election. For more information on absentee-by-mail eligibility, contact the Greene County Election Commission or visit the Tennessee Division of Elections website at: www. GoVoteTN.com. Military personnel, their families, and overseas citizens may also vote by absentee ballot if they meet certain requirements. Applications to vote by absentee ballot from military personnel, their families, and overseas citizens may be received no earlier than January 1 of the year in which the election is to be held unless the election is to be held less than ninety (90) days after January 1 of the calendar year. In that case, the application may be received no earlier than ninety (90) days before the election and no later than seven (7) days before the election. For further details and to review the requirements, please visit FVAP. gov or contact the Greene County Election Commission.

All qualified citizens have the right to vote in national, state and local elections after registering to vote. To be eligible to vote in Tennessee, a qualified citizen must be a citizen of the United States, must be 18 years of age or older on or before the date of the next election and must be a resident of Tennessee. As a convicted felon eligibility to register and vote depends upon the crime convicted of and the date of the conviction. If a felony conviction made a felon ineligible, the felon may regain your eligibility if the conviction has been expunged or if a successful petition to have their voting rights have been granted, unless the conviction for a crime rendered the felon permanently ineligible to vote. In order to participate in an election, a qualified voter must be properly registered no later than thirty (30) days before the election. The election commission office will process any by-mail voter SUN FILE PHOTO Election official Carolyn Harmon, right, gives instructions to Gary Leandes before he casts his votes at the Greene County registration form that has Election Commission office in 2019. been postmarked at least thirty (30) days before the Federal General Election. election. T.C.A 2-2-109. County General Election. held on the first Thursday coincides with the County One commissioner is Staff members at the In odd-numbered years, in August in even-numGeneral Election. elected in one election, and Greene County Election The town of Baileyton bered years, in conjunction the Town of Greeneville two commissioners are Commission Office are Municipal Election is a elects a mayor and four with the County General elected in the next election. available to assist the stand-alone election. aldermen, each serving a Election. Each serves a four-year public Monday through In even-numbered years, staggered four-year term. term. The commissioners Friday from 8:30 a.m. two aldermen for the 2nd In even-numbered years LOCAL ELECTIONS elect one of their own as until 4:30 p.m. The office ward and the mayor are when the mayor and two mayor. is located at 311 CCU Blvd., elected. In odd-numbered aldermen are not up for The Republican and Suite 1, Greeneville, TN years, two aldermen for the election, the town’s other Democratic parties in 37745. The public may two aldermen are elected. Greene County may choose first ward are elected. The EARLY VOTING reach the office by phone aldermen and mayor serve Mosheim: Town of to hold a county primary by calling 423.798.1715. Mosheim Municipal Elecelections on the first Tues- two-year terms. Registered voters may During some municipal cast their ballots early day in May. tions are held on the first elections, school board (in-person) during the Greene County holds Thursday in August every NATIONAL/STATE members are elected to period that extends 20 days a general election on the even-numbered year and VOTING serve four-year terms, and before an election to five first Thursday in August coincides with the County water commissioners are days before an election. Federal and state general in even-numbered years, General Election. elected to serve six-year During the Presidential in conjunction with the elections are held on the The town of Mosheim terms. The Greeneville Preference Primary, the first Tuesday after the first Federal / State Primary elects a mayor and four Board of Education has five aldermen, each serving a period extends 20 days Election. Monday in November in members which consist of before an election to seven Municipal elections in even-numbered years. staggered four-year term. days before an election. Greene County’s towns are two members from the 1st In even-numbered years In presidential election ward, two members from years, the Presidential Pref- non-partisan. The followwhen the mayor and two aldermen are not up for erence Primary election is ing is information for elec- the 2nd ward, and one atVOTING BY MAIL large member. The Town of election, the town’s other held on the first Tuesday in tions in municipalities: Greeneville’s Water Comtwo aldermen are elected. February. The Republican Greeneville: Town Registered voters may Tusculum: City of and Democratic parties in of Greeneville Municipal vote by mail when cermission has three members Tusculum Municipal Greene County may choose Elections are held on the tain conditions are met. who serve at-large. Elections are held on the to hold their primaries on first Thursday in August If voters wish to vote by Baileyton: Town of first Tuesday after the first mail, they must request a the same date. every year. In even-numBaileyton Municipal ElecMonday in November every ballot in writing over their Federal and State Rebered years, the Town of tions are held on the first even-numbered year and signature. The first day to Greeneville Municipal publican and Democratic Thursday in August every coincides with the State / receive a request is ninety Election coincides with the even-numbered year and party primary election are

ELECTION COMMISSION Justin Reaves is the administrator of elections for the Greene County Election Commission. The election commission’s chairman is Charles L Johnson (R). Charlena Kendrick Dean (D) is the secretary, and the commissioners are Matthew L. Hensley (R), Latasha W. Keller (R), and William West (D). The State Election Commission is responsible for appointing five county election commissioners for every county in the state. This is done on the first Monday in April in every odd-numbered year. The political party to which three of the five commissioners belong will be the party with the majority in the state legislature. There are three Republicans and two Democrats currently serving as election commissioners.

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