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2021 A guide to your town council candidates in northwest Guilford County
Cast your ballot early ...
CONTENTS Meet your Oak Ridge candidates
through Oct. 30 • See details on p. 2
Meet your Summerfield candidates
or on Election Day Tuesday, Nov. 2 • 6:30am-7:30pm
Meet your Stokesdale candidates
Test your knowledge
Candidate endorsement letters
Early voting Old County Courthouse (Blue Room)
brought to you by
First Floor – Room 108, 301 W. Market Street, Greensboro
Thursday, Oct. 21 – Friday, Oct. 22 8am-5pm Monday, Oct. 25 – Friday, Oct. 29 8am-5pm
Saturday, Oct. 30 • 8am-3pm
5834 Bur-Mil Club Road, Greensboro
Charlotte Hawkins Brown Kimball Hall 6136 Burlington Road, Gibsonville
Jamestown Town Hall 301 E. Main Street, Jamestown
Sunday, Oct. 24 • 10am-6:30pm Monday, Oct. 25 – Friday, Oct. 29 10am-6:30pm Saturday, Oct. 30 • 8am-3pm
Same-Day Registration Information
Contact us (336) 644-7035 • firstname.lastname@example.org location: 1616 NC 68 North, Oak Ridge, NC 27310 mail: PO Box 268, Oak Ridge, NC 27310
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facebook.com / NorthwestObserver
OCT. 21, 2021
Citizens who are not registered to vote in a county may register at early voting sites during the early voting period. After registering, the newly registered voter can immediately vote at that same site. This process is called “same-day registration.” The voter must prove their residence by showing any of the following documents with their current name and address: • North Carolina driver’s license • Other photo identification issued by a government agency. Any government-issued photo ID is acceptable, provided that the card includes the voter’s current name and address. • A copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document showing the voter’s name and address. • A current college/university photo identification card paired with proof of campus habitation. For more info about same-day registration, visit: www.guilfordcountync.gov/our-county/board-of-elections
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Meet the OAK RIDGE Town Council candidates Since this is an off-year election, Oak Ridge voters will only be voting for Oak Ridge Town Council candidates. Four Oak Ridge candidates will be on the Nov. 2 ballot, and voters will elect two of them. Oak Ridge Town Council has five members, each elected to a 4-year staggered term. The terms of Ann Schneider (mayor) and Jim Kinneman will expire as of the Dec. 2, 2021 town council meeting; both council members are running for re-election this November. Additionally, Mike Stone and Rachel Cowder are running for election. The terms of council members Doug Nodine, Martha Pittman and George McClellan will expire in December 2023. Oak Ridge citizens do not directly elect the town’s mayor, rather the mayor is elected by the town council at the December meeting after newly elected, or newly re-elected, candidates have been sworn into office.
ANN SCHNEIDER BIO: One of the best compliments I’ve received is that I don’t just live in Oak Ridge – I am “of Oak Ridge.” For me, this means preserving what’s best about our town’s unique character and history. Effective leadership requires sound planning and broad input from others. It also requires the energy to put the best plans into action and see them through to completion. I have a strong record of doing just that during the last two years as mayor, and over my
Please vote for
Oak Ridge Town Council Respecting the past, planning for the future. Oak Ridge is at a crossroads; decisions made today will either haunt us or benefit us in the years ahead. We can make the easy popular choices today or the ones that will stand the test of time. • Jim makes choices that benefit the entire town for the long run. • Jim doesn’t just show up for the vote and take credit, he takes the lead to get things done. • Jim took the lead on adding sidewalks, controlling cell towers, preventing big box stores, and Tree City designation. • Jim supports fiscal responsibility, lower taxes, safety, land use plan, open space preservation, and the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. • Jim is a software consultant who has worked for large and small companies and runs his own business.
• Jim was chairman of the Planning and Zoning Board, Board of Adjustment and Ordinance Review Committee. • Jim was an alternate on the Historic Preservation Commission. • Jim is an Air Force veteran. • Jim is a member of the Oak Ridge Lions Club. • Jim is a volunteer and bubble machine operator at Music in the Park. • Jim is the town representative on the ORYA Board. • Jim has been married to Carol for 34 years. • Jim is a Guardian ad Litem, advocating for children in foster care. • Jim works hard to keep Oak Ridge a great place to live for all.
Please remember to vote for Jim Kinneman on November 2. Keep Jim working for you. Authorized and paid for by Committee to Elect Jim Kinneman
...continued on p. 4
OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
MEET THE OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
...continued from p. 3
Ann Schneider (continued) entire four-year term on Council. Previously, I chaired the Historic Preservation Commission and served on the Land Use Plan Committee, Merchants of Oak Ridge board, and various PTA/PTSO boards where I was twice named Volunteer of the Year. With a master’s degree and over 30 years’ volunteer and work experience in the nonprofit and municipal sectors, I’m well-equipped to provide the informed and inspired leadership Oak Ridge needs. My husband Matt and I have been married for 34 years. We have three grown children and attend Oak Ridge United Methodist Church.
Mike Stone VOTE ON NOVEMBER 2!
OAK RIDGE TOWN COUNCIL I am greatly appreciative and honored to have received the following endorsements: •
Doug Nodine, Oak Ridge Town Council Member
Billy Queen, Former ATF Special Agent and Candidate for Guilford County Sheriff
• • • •
George McClellan, Oak Ridge Town Council Member
Dr. Jason Streck, Vice Chair of Oak Ridge Planning and Zoning Board
Eric Rasecke, Former US Navy aviator and retired Greensboro Police Officer
Dr. Steve Wilson, Rita Lewandowski, Patti Paslaru, Aleksandra Gill, Cathy Nodine – Community Leaders & Volunteers
STATEMENT: I’m running for re-election to Town Council because I love Oak Ridge. That’s why my campaign is laser-focused on doing what’s best for Oak Ridge and its future. There’s no other community I know of that inspires so many people to serve in so many different ways. Oak Ridge is a citizen-led town where residents have a voice in town planning and on town issues. We’ve become a model for towns across Guilford County as our Council builds on the good work of past councils. This is part of what makes Oak Ridge so special. Here’s what I’ll bring to another term on Council: • A commitment to engaged leadership that invests in citizen priorities. Over the past four years, our Council has had its most ambitious agenda ever – with more projects, successes, and long-term goals than ever before. Current efforts include constructing our new town park and site to honor veterans, expanding trails, renovating the historic Redmon House to serve as a community space, and increasing water access for our fire department. • A continued commitment to preserving the unique character and livability that brought us all to Oak Ridge. For example, I support our Village Feel project that will make our commercial core more attractive. I also helped develop a new program that will preserve open space and historic sites. • Support for low taxes and conservative budgets that allow us to save for the future while remaining among the lowest-taxed towns in North Carolina. • Always being accessible, responsive and pro-active in communicating with residents, businesses and area leaders. We’re doing great things in Oak Ridge. Let’s keep the momentum going!
About Me: •
Lifelong resident of Northwest Guilford County
Board Member for Preservation Oak Ridge and the Oak Ridge Community Center
Eagle Scout , U.S. Air Force Veteran and youth baseball coach
Active volunteer for Oak Ridge Military Academy, RidgeFest and Preservation Oak Ridge
Paid for by Committee to Elect Mike Stone
OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
RACHEL COWDER Candidate did not submit photo, bio, or statement for this publication.
MIKE STONE BIO: I’ve lived in this area my entire life. I went to local schools here and worked on local farms growing up. I was here when Oak Ridge was truly “rural” and I enjoyed the advantages of growing up in the country. I am a Christian, a conservative, an Eagle Scout and I served in the United States Air Force. I am a former Town Council member and former vice-chairman of the Planning and Zoning Board. I currently serve as a board member for Oak Ridge Community Center and for Preservation Oak Ridge. I’m an active volunteer for Oak Ridge Military Academy, RidgeFest and the Oak Ridge Commons Cruise-In. I’m married with two grown children and two wonderful grandsons.
ANN SCHNEIDER oAK RIDGE TOWN COUNCIL Mayor Ann Schneider is an experienced leader who: ■ Preserves our town’s unique character ■ Works closely with residents and businesses ■ Supports low taxes and conservative budgets ■ Invests in Oak Ridge’s future
STATEMENT: I am running for Town Council for some pretty simple reasons. I want to help manage the future growth of the town to benefit our current residents and I want to maintain our small-town, historic, rural character. I grew up in this area and I’ve seen the changes that have taken place. I believe that folks moved to Oak Ridge because they like the way it is – not with the intent to change our Town. I’m an avid supporter of our Planning and Zoning Board and we need all of our citizens’ input to ensure smart, slow, quality growth within our town. It’s important that we support our volunteer committees and listen to every perspective in order to manage development within our town. I intend to support the improvements of our parks and the Mountains-To-Sea Trail for the benefit of our town’s families. I strongly supported the first tax decrease in the Town’s history and we can do it again. I fully support the town’s efforts to develop fire-fighting capabilities through the town’s new water system.
...Oak Ridge candidates continued on p. 6
“Ann is the best choice!” — Gary & Myra Blackburn
Oak Ridge’s first female mayor supports citizen priorities, including: 4 4 4 4 4
Our new Heritage Farm Park A site to honor veterans Preserving open space Improving commercial areas Expanding water access for our Fire Department
Let’s keep the momentum going in Oak Ridge! Learn more at facebook.com/annschneider.nc Paid for by Committee to Elect Ann Schneider
Vote Nov. 2!
OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
MEET THE OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
JIM KINNEMAN BIO: I grew up in a small working-class town in New Jersey and have since lived in Greece, and six different states. I have 10 brothers and sisters. We’re spread out over the country, but we get together as often as we can. At Thanksgiving our family switches back and forth between my two brothers’ houses. I joined the Air Force after high school. My greatest adventure was in Athens, Greece; we worked really hard – pretty much six days a week – either flying on or fixing the airplanes. After leaving the Air Force I continued working with technology, first with office systems, then medical lasers and finally (so far), computers. I started a consulting business in 2005 which has kept me busy from the start. Baking is a hobby of mine (think pineapple/coconut). I’m an active member of Oak Ridge Lions Club and I volunteer as a Guardian ad Litem advocate for foster children. Carol and I celebrate 34 years of marriage just as you are reading this. Oak Ridge is where we have found a home. STATEMENT: I have lived in six different states and a foreign country. I have seen the results of knee-jerk, short-term thinking. Oak Ridge
...continued from p. 5
is at a crossroads where we need to choose the path that leads us to long-term solutions. In making decisions I do my best to consider how our choices will hold up 20, 30, 40 years from now. For many of our decisions we get one chance to get it right. My tag line is “Respecting the past, planning for the future.” I don’t just talk support for our history, but spent many hours volunteering with the restoration of Ai Church. When planning for the future I ensured that, while we can’t prevent cell towers, we can make them less visible. A key project of mine is providing WiFi in the park. When I attend town events, I’m not just there for a photo op, I pitch in to help. I worked very hard to learn the issues facing Oak Ridge before running for Council, and continue that effort every day. I hope that through my decisions you have seen that I consider the facts over emotion as much as possible. I’m not the type who shows up for a council meeting, raises a bunch of issues and goes away until next month. I’ve taken the lead on sidewalks, preventing big box stores and establishing sensible cell tower rules. As the council representative on the ORYA board, I work hard to make sure the youth of Oak Ridge are well served (ORYA does an amazing job) while ensuring the park is well-maintained. With your support I’ll continue to deliver for you.
VOTER Q&A Q How do I find out where I
A During Early Voting, you
can vote at any of the four early voting sites in Guilford County. On Election Day, you must vote in your assigned precinct. To find out where it is, visit www.ncsbe.gov/ voting/voter-tools-and-forms, scroll down and select Polling Place Search.
Q Where do Oak Ridge citizens
vote on Election Day?
A OR1: Oak Ridge Town Hall,
8315 Linville Road, or OR2: Oak Ridge United Methodist Church, 2424 Oak Ridge Road
Q When are polls open
on Election Day?
A Polling places are open on
Election Day (Nov. 2) from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
As of Oct. 15, 2021, the Town of Oak Ridge has registered voters. Of these, 1,139 are registered as Democrats; 2,724 registered as Republicans; 32 registered as Libertarians; and 2,094 unaffiliated.
OAK RIDGE CANDIDATES
For more voting information, visit www.guilfordcountync.gov/ our-county/board-of-elections
Meet the SUMMERFIELD Town Council & mayoral candidates Summerfield Town Council consists of a mayor, who is elected directly by citizens to a 2-year term, and ﬁve council members who are each elected to a 4-year staggered term. In Summerfield, the mayor only votes in case of a tie. Mayor BJ Barnes’ term will expire as of the Dec. 14, 2021 town council meeting, and Barnes is not running for re-election. Two former mayors, Gail Dunham and Tim Sessoms, are running for the mayor’s seat. Newcomers Janelle Robinson, Greg Fox and John Doggett, along with current council member Teresa W. Perryman, are running for the two open seats on the town council. The terms of council members John O’Day, Reece Walker, and Lynne Williams DeVaney will expire in December 2023.
TIM SESSOMS BIO: I am a graduate of UNC Greensboro and have lived in Summerfield for over 20 years. I’ve been married to my wife, Heather, a retired school teacher, for 37 years and we share the love of seven children and 14 grandchildren. I have a background in ministry and coaching high school sports. I’m also the founder and CEO of CRG, which provides executive retained search, IT and professional services staffing,
delivers IT projects and provides globally managed services for clients in the U.S. and seven Latin American countries. I am a conservative and would like to see Summerfield maintain a slow and steady approach to future growth and development. As mayor, I will continue to listen to residents’ ideas and feedback to protect the important balance we have here in our special town. I have experience running professionally organized meetings and will keep us on track with being a small, limited services town while embracing our special character and charm. STATEMENT: We have a great town with low taxes, a slow, progressive approach to growth, and many civicminded citizens. Summerfield Merchants Association brings business professionals together and actively supports town events, and Summerfield Recreation Association provides our youth with a wonderful experience in recreational sports. Our town committees are full of volunteers dedicated to Summerfield’s common good. I want to continue this positive trend. Although we have some similarities to our sister towns, Oak Ridge and Stokesdale, I’ll work to protect Summerfield’s uniqueness. We are a limited-services town with professional staff, excellent schools, and park facilities we can be proud of. We deserve a leader who will unite our citizens, not pull them apart. CRG, the company I founded almost 30 years ago, now has roughly 500 employees and generates over $40 million in annual revenue – and most importantly, we’ve done it by working together and by having a servant’s heart. I’ll bring that same approach to the mayor’s job. During my two previous years as mayor, Summerfield lowered its property tax rate for the first time; I initiated the annual town council strategic planning workshop (when my opponent was mayor, she made a mockery of it by not attending); and we resolved every lawsuit against our town while my opponent sued the town. As a past mayor and as a council member, I’ve loved serving the citizens of Summerfield. I’m passionate about helping people and resolving issues, and I will advocate for a slow, steady and thoughtful approach to growth and development while seeking citizen input on what we want and don’t want our town to be. I’m ready to lead us in a positive direction.
...Summerfield candidates continued on p. 8
MEET THE SUMMERFIELD CANDIDATES
GAIL DUNHAM BIO: Summerfield has been our home for almost 20 years and my husband, Ken, and I love Summerfield more every day. This is our forever home. We are fortunate that our daughter and family also moved to North Carolina and we are able to enjoy our grandchildren too. We lived in Illinois in the largest PD development in the U.S. at that time. Ken served on Zoning and Planning and I served on School Board, for the fastest growing school district in the U.S. We learned about development and how to do it right, and know painful mistakes when it is rushed and done badly. We do not want to see the negative impacts on anyone’s property, and our past experiences are helpful for the town future. I am retired from American Airlines (loved my job) and now Board Chair of AMRRC.net, AA Retirees Committee, the largest, fastest growing AA retiree organization. I made this commitment because I feel strongly that we must protect and improve retiree benefits and services for all seniors and retirees. STATEMENT: Positive goals to serve the people for the future of our beautiful town: keep Summerfield rural, restore fiscal responsibility and small government to serve the people.
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The need is great to work together to protect our drinking and home-use water, wells, septic, resources, infrastructure and your property rights. We need to elect people who will maintain our overall low density and moderate growth that has served us well, for Summerfield, not Greensboro. It was shocking on June 8 when town council approved radical increases in zoning density and development, with no public hearing and no public notice. A discussion about the impact on your water should have been made before council approved higher density. Four months later quadplexes can be built. The Town needs a better process to inform you, especially about rezoning adjoining or close to your property. You should have a voice during the process and specifically what will go where, not just at public hearings for rezonings. My goals include ballfields to enjoy, Bandera Farms, welcoming new businesses like the Greensboro Performing Arts (great companion to Tanger in Greensboro), helpful relationships with our wonderful schools and more. “The American Rescue Plan is centered on extensive community engagement,” to meet the grant fund criteria. I welcome public participation about how to invest the ARP funds to benefit the residents long-term. The door is open to opportunities that may find their path to Summerfield.
As of Oct. 15, 2021, the Town of Summerfield has
GREG FOX BIO: I was raised in Summerfield and have lived here practically my whole life. I served as a volunteer fireman with Summerfield Fire District prior to beginning a career in law enforcement. I began my career with the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office on June 3, 1985. I worked in many areas of law enforcement and spent much of my time working in the District 1 area, which includes Summerfield. For six years I was the assistant division commander of the District 1 office. I also served for nine years on the Underwater Search and Recovery team as a public safety diver. After retiring from the Sheriff’s Office, I went to work at Guilford Technical Community College as a police officer, where I still work today. My family has deep ties to the town. My father was a dentist in Summerfield for over 35 years. STATEMENT: One of the reasons I decided to run for Town Council was that a developer is proposing building apartments in the town. I do not believe that apartment complexes are suited for the town of Summerfield. I believe that growth for the town is necessary, however I believe the growth needs to be measured so that whatever does occur will be best suited for the town and the people in it.
8,521 registered voters. Of these, 1,644
are registered Democrats; 3,778 are registered Republicans; 58 are registered Libertarians; and 3,041 are unaffiliated.
Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 2 | Polls are open 6:30am-7:30pm 8
JANELLE ROBINSON BIO: My husband, Scott, and I are long-time residents of Summerfield. I taught language arts and social studies at Northwest Middle School until the birth of my first child, when I became a stay-at-home mom. Scott and I now have three children – a son who is a student at Summerfield Elementary School, another son who is a student at Northern Middle School, and a daughter, who is a student at Northern Guilford High School. I volunteer for many nonprofit and town events, and you may see me at the ballpark, the amphitheater in the town’s community park, on the local trails – or riding on an emergency call in my role as a volunteer firefighter and an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician). I am also the owner of Burn Bags USA, and employ women recovering from addiction. I am committed to the town of Summerfield and want to further my volunteer service as a member of Summerfield Town Council. STATEMENT: As I think about serving on our town council, three are three issues I believe to be most critical: 1). It’s important that our town council use the Land Use Plan as a guide when making decisions about future development – however, both the Land Use Plan and the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) have become very controversial topics. As a council member I’ll be committed to learning all I can, to hiring professionals when it is warranted, and to making sure the UDO and Land Use Plan comply with the Comprehensive Plan. I want to be a catalyst to bring our town together on these issues. 2). Our UDO. The Unified Development Ordinance continues to create drama, division and community strife. I would be in favor of seeking a professional in this area to help us work toward a higher level of understanding. A solid UDO should provide tools for striking a healthy balance between property rights and the impact of development. 3). Having an adequate water supply is an immediate concern for some, and a more long-term concern for many in our town. I want to explore all viable and affordable options to make sure we have potable
water, which is essential to our health, as well as water for fire safety and protection. Caring for our parks and preserving our heritage and our community’s rural feel are also critical, and I’ll do everything I can to protect them. I love Summerfield, and I promise I will work hard to maintain the things that make it a special place to call home today, tomorrow and long into the future.
JOHN DOGGETT BIO: I’m a fifth-generation family member to live on our family farm, which was a working dairy farm when I was a child and then a “pick-your-own” farm when I was a teenager. My wife, Angie, and I have raised two children here and have watched Summerfield go from a farming community to a thriving small town. My granddaughter is the seventh generation to live on our farmland and I hope she can live in Summerfield as an adult if she desires to do so. As a child, I was also a victim of a house fire. I am an experienced superintendent, and now the director of Continuous Improvement at Landmark Builders. I understand the need to protect Summerfield’s small farms while planning for the growth and development our town will continue to see. I know the value of hard work, sweat equity, and working with your neighbors. Farms don’t survive without those things. As a council member, I know I will have to make hard decisions for Summerfield to ensure its future success. STATEMENT: As we approach the election, I think the main issue facing our town is future development. At the moment, there seems to be two approaches: one is to pretend we can stop all development in Summerfield and refuse to work with developers; the second approach,
VOTER Q&A Q How do I find out where I should vote?
A During Early Voting, you can
vote at any of the four early voting sites in Guilford County. On Election Day, you must vote in your assigned precinct. To find out where it is, visit www.ncsbe.gov/voting/ voter-tools-and-forms, scroll down and select Polling Place Search.
Q Where do Summerfield citizens vote on Election Day?
SF1: Summerfield Community Center, 5404 Centerfield Road; SF2: First Baptist Church, 2300 Scalesville Road; SF3: Morehead United Methodist Church, 3214 Horse Pen Creek Road; SF4: Pleasant Ridge Christian Church, 2049 Pleasant Ridge Road; NCGR1: Center United Methodist Church, 6142 Lake Brandt Road
Q When are polls open on Election Day?
Polling places are open on Election Day (Nov. 2) from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Q What will be on this year’s ballot?
Since this is an off-year election, it is a municipal election only. Summerfield voters will elect a mayor to a two-year term and two council members, each to a four-year term.
...continued on p. 10
MEET THE SUMMERFIELD CANDIDATES
...continued from p. 9
John Doggett (continued)
from Northwest High School in 1982.
which is the one I will follow, is to follow the law and put an end to the acrimony between our citizens so we can have the best development that protects Summerfield’s rural character. We have big issues in Summerfield that will get resolved with or without the town council planning for them. I want the opportunity to work with all of Summerfield so that we can feel a shared responsibility. Let’s stop the misinformation, the baseless attacks, the seeing the worst in each other, and realize that we are all in this together. I am not going to promise that you will always agree with decisions I make as a council member, but I do promise that I will try my best to listen to you and be open to your persuasion. So, planning for the future development of Summerfield is the No. 1 policy issue I am committed to working on, and bringing everyone to the table to discuss these issues is the most important goal I have. Summerfield should be for all its citizens, and as your representative I will strive to make sure it is.
TERESA W. (PEGRAM) PERRYMAN BIO: I’m Teresa Winfree (Pegram) Perryman, aka “Robert’s daughter.” My family has had roots in Summerfield since the 1700s. I was born and raised in Summerfield and it has always been my hometown, except for when I lived in Houston, Texas, for three years, two months, two days, 12 hours and 35 seconds (but who counted?) for a job relocation. I went to school at Laughlin Primary, Summerfield Elementary, Northwest Junior High, then graduated
I have two of the greatest sons a mother could ask for. Recently remarried on 4.3.21, my husband, David, picked out the date. He is a numbers kind of guy. I have been a home-based small business owner since 2002. I was raised and baptized in Summerfield First Baptist Church, was a member of Summerfield 4H, in which my mother taught, and as far back as I can remember, I was active in every club there was in Summerfield. As a candidate for re-election to Summerfield Town Council, I would love to continue being a voice for our community. STATEMENT: To carry this town into the future with a vision, I will continue to support and work for: • Low density. This is something I will fight to keep. • Rural character. It’s important to preserve this, for it is the reason families move to our community. • Groundwater is a high priority, and we need to protect and preserve it for our wells. • Low, limited-services government to keep our taxes low. I would like to focus on the 2021 Unified Development Ordinance. I voted no to this ordinance because of the large increase in density. We need to put back the overall density of 1.3 units per acre. I am opposed to four units (multi-housing/apartments) per acre. On June 8, 2021, the current council passed the UDO 4-1, which allows four dwelling units per acre. I voted no. I will do my best to keep water and sewer from coming into our town. I would consider it a pleasure to continue serving the citizens of Summerfield and keep your voices heard. So, you see, Summerfield is my history, blood, sweat and tears. How lucky I am to see Summerfield grow into the town it is now and to carry the town into the future.
Vote early through Oct. 30 (See details on p. 2) 10
Positive ·· Informed ·· Fair ·· Respectful If you value these attributes in your elected leaders, please vote for these Summerfield candidates on the Nov. 2 ballot:
Tim Sessoms, Summerfield mayor, John Doggett and Janelle Robinson, Summerfield Town Council
TIM SESSOMS, candidate for mayor
Tim has previously represented Summerfield as mayor, and currently serves as a council member and as mayor pro tem. He’s a graduate of UNC Greensboro, and has lived in Summerfield for 20 years. Tim and Heather, who is a retired school teacher, have been married 37 years. Together they share the love of seven kids and 14 grandkids. Tim has a background in music ministry, and has volunteered as a high school sports coach. He’s also the founder and CEO of CRG, a company that provides executive searches for information technology and professional services in the United States and seven Latin American countries. CRG and its roughly 500 employees are committed to providing a quality service in conjunction with being supporters and servant leaders of many philanthropic causes. Tim has conservative values and would like to see Summerfield maintain a slow and steady approach to any future growth and development. “As I did previously as mayor, I will continue to listen to residents’ ideas and feedback to protect the balance we have here in our special town,” Tim says. “I have experience running a large, professional company. I have the organizational skills to run professional town meetings and the ability to keep our small, limited services town on track. “I am committed to helping us retain the character and charm that makes Summerfield unique. I love helping people and resolving issues, and I’ll work hard to unite our community and make it better.”
Tim Sessoms can be reached at 336.803.0322 or Tsessoms@getcrg.com.
JANELLE ROBINSON, candidate for Summerfield Town Council
Janelle and her husband, Scott, are long-time Summerfield residents. Janelle taught language arts and social studies at Northwest Middle School until the birth of her first child, when she embraced the role of being a stay-at-home mom. She and Scott have three children, a son who is a student at Summerfield Elementary, another son at Northern Middle School and a daughter at Northern High School. Janelle believes everyone has a responsibility to share any God-given talents they have and has acted on that belief many times. She volunteers for many nonprofits and town events. You may see her at the ballpark, the amphitheater, the community park or on our local trails. You could see her on an emergency call in her role as a volunteer firefighter or Emergency Medical Technician. Janelle also owns and operates Burn Bags USA and employs women recovering from addiction. Janelle wants to further her volunteer service as a member of the Summerfield Town Council. Vote for Janelle and you will be voting for a mother, a dedicated community volunteer, a small business owner and a leader you can be proud to have representing you.
Janelle Robinson can be reached at 336.312.5170 or at email@example.com.
JOHN DOGGETT, candidate for Summerfield Town Council
John’s family has lived and farmed in Summerfield for over 200 years and he has lived in Summerfield all his life. John raises cattle on his farm – in photo at left, John is standing in the field with some of his cattle. John knows what makes our town the place he loves and where others want to live – those things include our open space, our parks and trails, and yes, well-planned communities and a tax rate that is the lowest in the state for a town our size. He recognizes that growth is a part of any thriving community and believes it can be accomplished by good planning and a commitment to fair treatment for all citizens, including those who want to be part of our community. John is committed to working with longtime residents as well as newcomers toward a goal of managed growth and blending our community, while retaining its rural flavor.
John Doggett can be reached at 336.462.1852 or Dogg7460@gmail.com.
PAID FOR BY BJ BARNES COMMITTEE
Fact vs.Fiction I’m BJ Barnes, Summerfield mayor, and before that, Guilford County sheriff for 24 years. I’m a 38-year resident of Summerfield. I want to set the record straight. There is a publication many Summerfield residents periodically receive in their mailbox, the “Summerfield Scoop,” that in its own words admits to being biased. “Scoop” writers claim they “attempt” to be fair and that they offer “non-journalistic opinions.” The words “attempt” and admitted “bias” should alone serve as a warning about the validity of the publication’s content. So much of what the “Scoop” prints is meant to influence opinion by distorting or being controversial and presenting alarming “facts.” I want to point out just some of the recent egregious “facts” that have been distorted to fit the “Scoop’s” narrative, and its intentional bias which is aimed at misleading you.
Let me start by challenging you to do what the “Scoop” does not. Verify the information I’m providing. I can assure you it is factual, whereas the information in the “Scoop,” which is largely provided by Summerfield residents Don Wendelken and Gail Dunham, who served as Summerfield’s mayor from December 2017-2019 and is now running again for mayor, is riddled with words like “could, would, should, may, can, might” – words that attempt to lead you not to facts, but to their personal opinions. At best, the “Scoop” can be described as “yellow journalism,” defined as that which is based on sensationalism and crude exaggeration. “Scoop” writers have also been divisive and at the center of much of the negativity in our town. While Wendelken and Dunham are behind the “Scoop,” you won’t find their names in the masthead or their bylines with their “articles.” They have cost our town thousands of dollars in staff time and legal fees to defend against frivolous lawsuits. Dunham has submitted the most public record requests of any Summerfield citizen, and many were senseless and unnecessarily consumed staff and town attorney’s time. Dunham and Wendelken supported efforts to elect a person to Town Council who did not even reside in Summerfield, and to keep him in office even after it was proven he lived in Greensboro – a FACT that was upheld in several different judicial venues. They were also at the center of the appeals, again costing thousands of taxpayer dollars, when the cases were adjudicated at different levels – and they still do not accept the rulings of the judicial venues that ruled against them. Wendelken, along with two other Summerfield residents, filed a lawsuit alleging the town had acted improperly. Again, they lost in court, and that is a FACT. They refuse to accept the courts’ decision, and continue to cost the town thousands in litigation.
In a recent mailing, the “Scoop’s” unidentified writers urge Summerfield citizens to “Just Say No!” and claim citizens will foot the bill for a municipal water and sewer system if it were provided for a proposed planned development. Although that is not factual, the truth does not fit their narrative.
FACT: If the water and sewer were approved by elected officials in Summerfield, Greensboro and Guilford County, the developer would pay for it by creating a special tax district. NO resident would be forced to abandon their well or septic unless they chose to. NO revenue will come from any Summerfield resident by any means other than their wish to be included should their well or septic fail. The “Scoop” writers know this, but they continue to imply otherwise. FACT: Commercial businesses need water and
sewer to operate. Failures of individually owned well and septic systems can contribute to the contamination of adjoining and downstream systems. This is a concern for your council and any water provider, such as Greensboro, whose water supply borders our town. The idea of a municipal water/septic system is wise to protect everyone’s health and safety, especially for commercial uses. Water systems are expensive, and getting such a system without having to tax citizens to cover its cost is a once-in-a lifetime opportunity. Also, having water for fire safety could be a lifesaving benefit. Let me emphasize, Summerfield Town Council is NOT suggesting or considering a municipal water/ septic system at a cost to any property owner who does not request it through a special tax district and no such district, has been formally requested by any property owner. Regarding the “Scoop’s” plea to “Just Say No” to higher taxes and growing government…
FACT: Summerfield has had the same tax rate
– 2.75 cents (per $100 property valuation) – for years, and it’s the lowest in the state for a town our size. There are no proposed projects or plans to increase government that will necessitate a tax increase, nor do council members, who also live
If you believ
in Summerfield, desire to increase the yours.
The “Scoop” would have you believe from the “special tax district,” if the pr requests it for his development, would directly to Summerfield. NOT true. It lected and retained by Guilford Count offset any expenses incurred to service
And again, it would be paid for by the If the town were to request and get a the tax revenue – which is possible – i serve to lessen the tax burden on Sum citizens, not increase it.
The “Scoop” urges citizens to “Just S the town controlling their property rig implies the town intends to, which is misleading.
FACT: Who among us has not said,
and I should be able to do what I wan property?” The truth is, you can – up The town has zoning restrictions codif town ordinances, which are there for of your rights, and, to be equitable, yo rights.
Trampling on the rights of a property o is entitled to due process is just the be may be them today, but it could be yo Fair and equitable is the standard this heres to, and we’re committed to pro rights through our ordinances and zon tions, not taking them away.
While the battle cry, “NO PD,” is cat planning development is NOT based government.
FACT: By law, citizens and property o the right to make any request of their which in turn has the responsibility to request and decide based on the prev
“Scoop” fiction. Apartments are com merfield, and they will bring crowded schools, and increase crime.
FACT: We have a developer who ow 1,000 acres in Summerfield and he is
field citizens, do you know the difference?
ve what you hear and what you read in the “Summerfield Scoop,” you may not
eir taxes or
tax revenue roperty owner d be paid would be colty and used to e this district.
e developer. portion of it would only mmerfield
Say No” to ghts. This divisive and
“I pay taxes, nt on my to a point. fied through the protection our neighbors’
owner who eginning – it ou tomorrow. s council adotecting your oning regula-
tchy, NOT d on sound
owners have government, consider the vailing law.
ming to Sumd roads and
wns close to s proposing a
planned development. Apartments are part of the master plan for his property, as well as a grocery store and shopping area, medical facility and senior citizen community. The proposed apartments, IF approved, would be located near commercial areas, where the access to grocery stores and other services via main roads are the most advantageous, and they would be buffered by open space and trails to shield their view from other areas. Opponents to “affordable housing” options say they aren’t needed in Summerfield.
FACT: “Affordable housing” options in Summer-
field are scarce and often out of price range for our teachers, law enforcement officers, firefighters, young adults and senior citizens. I know of people who can’t afford to live in Summerfield, though they have family and history here. One such person is a former Summerfield fire chief, who served our town for years. After he retired and was ready to downsize, he had to move out of Summerfield because there were no communities geared toward senior citizens. Do we really want to exclude those with roots here and who have contributed so much to our town? “Scoop” writers urge you to just “Just Say No” to an overpriced town hall. Wendelken and Dunham have quoted the cost of a new town hall as approaching $5 to $6 million.
FACT: This council has voted on a town hall not
to exceed $3.5 million. We are so committed to this price that we have put the project on hold until inflated building material prices due to the pandemic come back down. Our town hall will be built on property owned by the town and will be on budget. A new town hall has been discussed for years by other councils and citizens. Many of our citizens have requested a town hall that would give them easier ADA (American with Disabilities Act) access, be centrally located and have room for meetings and special events. The cost of this town hall will be paid in full upon completion, using funds from interest earned on investments the town has made over the years. After constructing and furnishing the town hall, we will still have more than 300%
above what is required for a town to have in its fund balance, while our investment earnings will continue to increase. The town has used investment earnings in the past for things like parks, trails and land purchases without increasing the tax on our citizens. Wendelken, Dunham and some of their followers have spoken out against and worked to stop such things as picnic shelters, athletic field improvements, Music in the Park events, the community park amphitheater, Movies in the Park, Founders’ Day activities, historical activities, trail enhancements, and other things our citizens have asked for and enjoy. Some claim that hundreds of citizens have filled out a survey opposing a proposed planned development.
FACT: The survey they refer to is called “push
polling,” which uses questions designed to “push” you to the answer the surveyor desires. For example, there is a question that asks if you want to pay more taxes. Of course you don’t! Who does? The questions aren’t based on facts, rather “what ifs?” and “could be.” The survey respondents’ list has not been provided as requested, nor have survey results been presented to the council for verification. The surveyors claim they are keeping names of survey respondents confidential to protect them. Protect from whom, and from what?
FACT: In this election for town council your vote
will decide the type of government and town you want. Think back to the vitriol and embarrassment we had to endure in Dunham’s first term as mayor. And be aware – many of the things that make our town the wonderful place it is were accomplished over her objections.
FACT: Teresa W. Perryman, who is running for
re-election, is consistently the “No” vote on many of the positive things being accomplished in Summerfield. She even seems to pride herself on being the outsider. Is this any way to govern – to attend meetings with the intention of dissenting instead of listening, considering and working toward common goals?
In 1867, John Stuart Mill said the following in an address at the University of St. Andrews, and I believe his words are as true today as they were then. “Let not anyone pacify his conscience by the delusion that he can do no harm if he takes no part and forms no opinion. Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.” Please vote in the upcoming Summerfield Town Council election, but before you vote, educate yourself on the issues important to you and our town. I’m counting on you being the same type of voter most of your council members are – one who is committed to keeping Summerfield a town we can be proud of, a town that is inclusive, and a town that celebrates its history and enjoys its rural charm but does not ignore the future, which we all must meet. I hope you’ll agree that we need to make sure the Summerfield we love follows the law and is equitable when considering requests by citizens and property owners, and that we protect their rights while looking for ways to grow in a responsible manner. Just saying “NO” is not governing, is not responsible and will not protect our town. We need leaders who will listen and who will make decisions with the best interests of our citizens and our future in mind. Tim Sessoms, John Doggett and Janelle Robinson are such leaders. Please give them your support in this election.
On the page following this write-up, please read what some of the leaders who live in or run businesses in our town have to say about Sessoms, Doggett and Robinson.
Don’t just take my word for it Read what some of your Summerfield neighbors, business owners and leaders have to say about why they support Tim Sessoms, John Doggett and Janelle Robinson for Summerfield Town Council
“We need elected officials who can deliver on the Summerfield Comprehensive Plan and effectively lead our Town Council in a productive manner. Sessoms, Robinson and Doggett will accomplish this in a positive way while collaborating with Summerfield citizens.” – Andrew Broom, Summerfield resident and business owner
“As the longest serving mayor in Summerfield, I know something about governing and about commitment to community, and that’s why I’m voting for Tim Sessoms for mayor and Janelle Robinson and John Doggett for council. I know them to be good people and they have Summerfield’s best interests at heart. I hope you will join me in voting for them to represent us.” – Mark Brown, former Summerfield mayor, lifetime resident
“I served on the first elected council 20+ years ago. As a council we recognized that while the vision and dream for Summerfield are important, it is a plan that will get us there. Failure to plan is nothing more than a plan to fail. Our planning and implementation decisions will dictate how we grow, how we prosper and survive as a community. “We now have a chance to adopt a sensible plan provided by a committee of citizens. We need sensible, professional people to implement that plan. Tim Sessoms, Janelle Robinson and John Doggett are those sensible people. They will be fair, respectful and enter each decision based not on bias, but fact. Without reservation, I support these leaders.” – Gary N. Brown, former council member, Summerfield resident
“I have served Summerfield as councilperson, mayor pro tem and mayor since we incorporated as a town. Having served as mayor and proudly served with every mayor and council except the present one, I can tell you we do not need a redux of former mayor Gail Dunham, whose time as mayor was mired down by her constant maligning of staff and divisive behavior. “I hope you will join me in voting for Tim Sessoms for mayor, Janelle Robinson and John Doggett for council. They could join the team of current council members Lynne W. DeVaney, Reece Walker and John O’Day to help Summerfield retain its rural charm while being responsible in protecting our best interests.” – Dena Barnes, former mayor, lifelong Summerfield resident
“I’m a Summerfield business owner and I value the many friends and customers I have made over the years. Summerfield needs committed individuals like John Doggett, Janelle Robinson and Tim Sessoms who understand business and its importance to the community as it relates to responsible growth. Please vote for their leadership on Nov. 2.” – Keith Bunch, Summerfield business owner
"Tire Max is honored to be a part of the Summerfield community. My family has long been a part of Summerfield, and my father was born and raised here. I know the proud heritage of this beautiful town, how it celebrates its past, but looks and works toward a better tomorrow. I know Tim Sessoms to be an honorable man and I appreciate his moral values and work ethic. I support Tim for mayor and Janelle Robinson and John Doggett for council. We need positive, community-minded and caring leaders.” – Max Gardner, Summerfield business owner
“Summerfield is a great community that needs positive leadership through positive people – positive leaders like Tim Sessoms, Janelle Robinson and John Doggett.”
– Billy Tesh, Summerfield resident and business owner
“Today’s decisions decide our future, and we need to elect candidates with strong leadership capabilities along with a willingness to listen and serve all citizens fairly. With great confidence I support Tim Sessoms for mayor and Janelle Robinson and John Doggett for council. These candidates are exceptional in their knowledge of the town, their honesty, and their hard work. They have no hidden agenda and are without a doubt the best choice for Summerfield. Your vote counts." – Bob Williams, former Summerfield Town Counci member and mayor pro tem
“I am excited about the prospect of Tim Sessoms, Janelle Robinson and John Doggett being on the Summerfield Town Council. They are longtime residents of Summerfield and all are small business owners. They have, or have had kids in our local school system. “I have worked with Tim and Janelle on different community projects – and in case you are wondering, I have literally known John Doggett all his life. Tim, Janelle and John are our neighbors and will listen to our concerns and treat us all fairly.” – Jane Doggett, former Summerfield Town Council member and longtime Summerfield resident
PAID FOR BY BJ BARNES COMMITTEE
Meet the STOKESDALE Town Council & mayoral candidates (two candidates for mayor and four candidates for town council will be on the Nov. 2 ballot) Stokesdale Town Council consists of a mayor, who is elected directly by citizens, and four council members who are each elected to a 4-year staggered term. Mayor John Flynt’s term will expire as of the Dec. 9, 2021 town council meeting, as will the term of council member Thearon Hooks. Flynt is running for another term as mayor and newcomer Mike Crawford is also running for mayor. Tim Jones, Frank Bruno, Mark Nadel and Alisa Houk will appear on the ballot as candidates for the one open council seat, although Houk has withdrawn from the race. The terms of council members Jimmy Landreth, Derek Foy and Jim Rigsbee will expire in December 2023.
MIKE CRAWFORD BIO: My wife, Donna, and I have lived in Stokesdale for almost 13 years. We have two grown children and three grandchildren. I grew up in Jamestown, and appreciate the small-town feel of Stokesdale. I have successfully operated my own business in neighboring small towns for the last 35 years. I have served on the board of my homeowners association for more than nine years, most of those years as HOA president. I know how to work together to get things done. STATEMENT: Stokesdale is my home and as the town’s next mayor, I will understand the importance of maintaining the township’s character while also positioning Stokesdale to be a place where businesses know they are welcome and can prosper.
JOHN FLYNT (incumbent) BIO: My family has lived in Stokesdale for five generations, and I know the history and culture of our town. I have served six years as mayor and two years as mayor pro tem, which have given me valuable experience in local government. I served on Forecast 2015, Northwest Guilford and Stokesdale Long Range Planning Committees, and worked over 40 years in real estate. I have served on Stokesdale Fire Department’s board of directors, the Malachi Boys Home board, numerous HOA board positions, volunteered with Jaycees and served 20 years as a member of the local Selective Service System board. I have a business degree from UNC and an MBA from UNCGreensboro. I am a faithful member of Oak Level Baptist Church. My roots are deep in Stokesdale and I have always been a strong advocate for the town. I maintain a regular schedule at Town Hall and work the long hours necessary to serve Stokesdale. I hope to continue serving as mayor and I ask for your support in November. STATEMENT: Stokesdale is my hometown, and I want to ensure our values, traditions and history are preserved and protected. I want to minimize the role of government, ensure adequate safeguards to protect our property/individual rights and maintain the quality of life we cherish. Having served as mayor/mayor pro tem for eight years, I know the challenges and responsibilities of being mayor but also recognize the tremendous opportunities and importance of public service. If elected, I will continue to maintain regular office hours, be active and involved in local activities, advocate for the town and represent every citizen of Stokesdale. Important issues we need to address: • Expand/improve our water system. We are currently exploring the option of a new secondary waterline to insure a continuous and uninterrupted supply of water. Over the past four years we have performed deferred maintenance on our water tank, revised our water specifications, hired a part-time licensed water operator, eliminated dry tap fees, worked to keep our town out of a proposed regional water system that would have significantly increased our monthly water bills and required a water bond and a special use tax, and worked to increase the number of water system customers to over 640. We will be receiving a $1.1 million state grant that can be used for future improvements. • Revise our comprehensive land use plan to reflect best land use practices. • Expand the recreational amenities at our town park. • Continue our fiscal responsibilities and insure we do not have to institute a property tax. • Serve and respect every citizen. ...continued on p. 16
MEET THE STOKESDALE CANDIDATES candidates for town council
Q How do I find out
where I should vote?
BIO: My wife and I moved to Stokesdale in August 2017. I grew up on Long Island in the nation’s first planned community, which was developed for returning
A During Early Voting, you
can vote at any of the four early voting sites in Guilford County. On Election Day, you must vote in your assigned precinct. To find out where it is, visit www.ncsbe.gov/voting/ voter-tools-and-forms, scroll down and select Polling Place Search.
Q Where do Stokesdale citizens
vote on Election Day?
A Stokesdale Town Hall,
8325 Angel Pardue Road
Q When are polls open on Election Day?
A Polling places are open on Election Day (Nov. 2) from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
WWII veterans. Choosing Stokesdale was easy, as I have always enjoyed small town rural living. I am an amateur radio operator and enjoy riding motorcycles, gardening and shooting. I have volunteered in the past for the U.S. Veterans Health Administration, children’s hospitals as well as the Muscular Dystrophy organization and The American Red Cross. In addition, I was a first responder at Ground Zero in New York City on 9/11. In my time residing in Stokesdale, I have served on the town’s Planning Board, Ordinance Review Committee and Events Committee. I am all about appreciating what I have and how I can give back to the community for all to benefit. STATEMENT: I have had the opportunity to speak with residents of our community and it is apparent many have similar concerns about our future. In the years I have lived in Stokesdale I see four very important issues that concern myself and fellow citizens. They are: the possibility of adding a town tax,
Q What will be on this year’s ballot?
A Since this is an off-year
election, Stokesdale citizens will only be voting for a mayor and one Town Council member.
...continued from p. 15
maintaining our town’s history, financial responsibility and responsible development. Having attended official town meetings and workshops, many decisions made by the leaders of our town were, in my opinion, not in the best interests of our citizens. A recent example was the decision of the council to purchase additional property next to Town Hall. Stokesdale paid above the appraised market value for this land. In order to complete that purchase, funds were reallocated from the park’s capital improvements budget. Having reviewed minutes of many Council meetings, I see a trend where the council votes to make budget amendments on a regular basis. In my opinion, this is not fiscally responsible and shows poor planning when implementing the budget. If we continue making huge purchases and shifting funds within the budget, we could end up having financial deficits that could cause a town tax to be imposed and that is something I am against. I will work very hard to make sure we are proper stewards of our finances along with complete transparency. We cannot allow builders and land developers to dictate our future. The citizens know what is in the best interest of Stokesdale and it is important that the town leadership listens to every citizen’s concern regarding our future.
Stokesdale has registered voters as of Oct. 15, 2021. Of these, 795 were registered as Democrats; 2,123 registered as Republicans; 30 registered as Libertarians; and 1,584 were unaffiliated.
TIM JONES BIO: I humbly ask for your vote for Stokesdale Town Council. I have been a resident of Stokesdale my entire life. I believe in small, limited government that protects the individual. I am a proponent of property rights. I look forward to improving Town Park given a good plan and citizen input. I believe in the KISS method – “Keep it Simple Stokesdale.” I currently serve as chairman of the town’s Planning Board and served on the Town Council from 2015-2019. I am well versed on state statutes, town ordinances and insistent the town’s government conducts itself properly. When I served on town council, former councilmember Bill Jones and I were seemingly chased out of town for shining a light on cases of malfeasance occurring at Town Hall. Two of those participants (a former council member and former town employee) are my opponents in this election. Another one is running for re-election as mayor. I felt vindicated and validated when current councilmembers Landreth, Foy and Rigsbee discovered like cases of malfeasance for themselves, upon being elected two years ago and publicly communicated their verifiable findings as reported by this newspaper. It’s time to restore integrity and consistency in our elected officials. The citizens will do their part in voting for Tim Jones for town council and Mike Crawford for mayor.
ALISA HOUK Although Alisa Houk’s name will appear on the Nov. 2 ballot, she has withdrawn from the race for town council.
FRANK BRUNO BIO: I moved my family to Stokesdale in 1991 to enjoy the small-town atmosphere, the friendly people, and the quality of life Stokesdale has to offer. I have strived to protect these qualities of our town while living here, and looked after them for our citizens as a member of the town council for eight years; I’ve participated as a member of the town’s Planning Board and served on various town committees, including the Events Committee, where I helped plan our annual Christmas parade. Before working with the town, I helped form Stokesdale Business Association and Four Corners Chamber of Commerce. Through these organizations we held various events in Stokesdale including trade shows, spring and fall festivals, fundraisers and 9/11 ceremonies. My goals for Stokesdale are simple: provide a community where everyone feels welcome and supported by the town council, create an inclusive atmosphere where no one is left behind, and bring diversity to our current town committees so everyone has a voice. STATEMENT: Town park. Stokesdale has a great resource that is not used to its full potential. A few years ago, the town conducted a survey to find out what park improvements citizens wanted. The top choices included
more walking trails, a basketball court, an amphitheater and additional park shelters. Over the past two years none of this has happened, even though the town has budgeted each year for park improvements. It’s time the council listens to the citizens. There is plenty of money in the current budget and in the town’s savings to make these things happen and give back to the community. Town manager. Town Council members volunteer an inordinate amount of time to focus on day-to-day operations, oversee the water system, oversee and work on the annual budget, make decisions on weekly spending items, research and get quotes for various town projects, and many other daily/ weekly items that arise when running any town or business. A town manager would allow the council to better serve the citizens of Stokesdale and help plan for its future. As the town puts together another Future Land Use Committee, council members’ time would be better spent concentrating on Stokesdale’s future growth, working with our local business community, and promoting the town as the great place it is to live and work in. Water system. It’s time the town looks at expanding the water system into underserved areas of our community. These citizens have been ignored while the water quality from their wells deteriorates. A plan needs to be implemented to help these citizens and use the money the town recently received from the state to make it happen.
now through Oct. 30, or vote on Election Day,
Help these elected officials find their way to the flag!
How well do you know your election trivia? Check your answers on pg. 23.
1. How many terms can a mayor or town council member in Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale serve? A. Two 4-year terms B. One 4-year term C. Elected officials in Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale do not have term limits 2. TRUE or FALSE? In Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale, citizens vote for council members and for their mayor. A. TRUE B. FALSE 3. How often do we vote for president of the United States? A. Every two years B. Every four years C. Every six years 4. What is the longest any U.S. senator has served? A. 25 years B. 40 years C. 50 years 5. What are the legal requirements for presidential candidates, as directed by the Constitution? A. A presidential candidate must have been a resident of the United States for 14 years, have held some other political office and be 26 or older. B. A presidential candidate must have become a citizen of the United States within the last 8 years, been a resident for 10 years and be 28 or older. C. A presidential candidate must be a natural born citizen of the United States, a permanent resident for 14 years, and 35 or older.
Did you know?
Why is Election Day always on Tuesday? Election Day in our country initially varied by state, but in 1845 a law was passed to set a single election day for the entire country, and Tuesday following the first Monday of November was designated as Election Day. This longstanding tradition came about because most citizens worked as farmers and lived several miles away from their polling place. In an era when people did not have automobiles, traveling to the polls could take at least a day, so lawmakers needed to allow a two-day window for traveling back and forth to the polls. Weekends were impractical, since most people spent Sundays in church, and Wednesday was market day for farmers. Early November was selected as the ideal time to vote because the harvest was over but the weather was still relatively mild. The reason Election Day was specified as the Tuesday “after the first Monday” was to prevent it from falling on November 1. That day was considered unfavorable because some Christians observed it as All Saints’ Day and also because merchants typically took the first day of the month to settle their books for the previous month. Information obtained from britannica.com and history.com.
When was the voting age in our country lowered to 18?
On July 1, 1971, lawmakers ratified the 26th Amendment to the Constitution, which lowered the minimum voting age from 21 to 18.
Which president was in office for the shortest period of time?
William Henry Harrison. He died April 4, 1841, only one month after Inauguration Day (Inauguration Day was March 4 instead of Jan. 20, as it is now), from complications of what at the time was believed to be pneumonia.
Endorsement letters for ... STOKESDALE
TOWN COUNCIL candidates
Elect Mike Crawford I am voting for Mike Crawford for Stokesdale mayor. On his Facebook page, he explains his hope for Stokesdale: “Our town is growing. I want to preserve the small-town charm and sense of community while we grow in a smart manner.” Until recently, I haven’t been involved in local politics, but was interested in a recent land issue because the land being considered for commercial development adjoins some homes in my neighborhood. I have three kids and live in a large development off Haw River Road. I attended a Stokesdale Planning Board meeting and a Town Council meeting. I was appalled at how the council, led by Mayor John Flynt, handled the issue. I felt the concerns of the many residents present weren’t valued and instead, Mr. Flynt and two of the five council members made what I believe was an illogical decision and one that directly opposed the recommendation of the town’s Planning Board, the town planner, and the town development plan, and benefitted
outside commercial interests. After seeing how this issue was handled, I did a little research in the archives of local publications. Our mayor has a long history of behavior that I find unbecoming in an elected official, including erecting a massive sign in his yard to campaign against a citizen running for his own council, blocking the phone number of one of his own council members and refusing to answer his emails, and stomping out of a meeting saying, “I quit,” then later retracting his statement. What Stokesdale needs is a person who can act like an adult, lead the council by making logical decisions, and who has the interests of the people of Stokesdale, not developers or other outside interests, at heart. Based on his long career as a small-business owner, his strength of character, and his desire to help our community, I think Mike Crawford is the right person to be the next mayor of Stokesdale. Jenny Knesel, STOKESDALE
Elect Tim Jones, Mike Crawford The Town of Stokesdale has seen much growth since I resigned
from council in May of 2019 to move to Kernersville. Some things
have changed for the better, and unfortunately, some have gotten worse. Without a seasoned council member who knew the background of the numerous questionable vendor issues and business dealings, it has taken a while to correct some issues. I would like to once again endorse Tim Jones for Town Council. Tim has a great deal of experience from serving on the council
from 2015 to 2019. I would also like to endorse Mike Crawford for mayor. I believe he will return transparency and integrity to the office. Thank you in advance for your consideration. William Jones, KERNERSVILLE William Jones is a former Stokesdale Town Council member
Endorsement letters for ... OAK RIDGE
TOWN COUNCIL candidates Re-elect Jim Kinneman In the many years I served with Jim Kinneman, I found him to have only the best interests of Oak Ridge and its people at heart. Both level-headed and conscientious, Jim has always been a stabilizing force in conducting the business of our town.
I encourage citizens to cast their ballot for Jim on Election Day. Ray Combs, OAK RIDGE Ray Combs is a former Oak Ridge Town Council member and mayor
Elect Mike Stone I offer my endorsement of Mike Stone for Oak Ridge Town Council. As a former town council member and former Planning and Zoning Board vice chair, he has the experience needed to support our town. Mike is a USAF military veteran and a proud supporter of veteran causes. In addition to his volunteer work with Oak Ridge Military Academy, he serves on various
The Northwest Observer • Totally local since 1996
non-profit boards in Oak Ridge as well as other volunteer activities. As a lifelong resident of this area, Mike has been actively involved in supporting and promoting our town for years. Mike brings a conservative perspective and a love of our town to all he does. Billy Queen, OAK RIDGE
...Endorsements continued on p. 20
OCT. 21, 2021
connected to your
Re-elect Ann Schneider I am writing to strongly endorse Ann Schneider for re-election to Oak Ridge Town Council. In my eight years serving on Town Council, I have worked with Ann in many capacities, as a committee member, committee chair and fellow Town Council member. In that time, I have seen her tireless energy and devotion in working to make Oak Ridge a better place for all our citizens to live, work and play. She has used her strong strategic planning and critical thinking skills to lead our current council in pursuing a visionary capital improvement program, which includes development of our Heritage Farm Park with new playing fields, walking trails and a veterans’ memorial. Ann is committed to keeping
taxes low and to conservative, financially responsible budgets. Perhaps most importantly, she understands the challenge of balancing the growth the town needs to prosper with preserving our character and heritage as a historic, rural agrarian community, and she is committed to maintaining that balance. In all that she does, her honesty, integrity, fairness and thoughtfulness is evident. Please vote on Nov. 2, and when you do, I encourage you to vote for Ann Schneider for Oak Ridge Town Council. Spencer Sullivan, OAK RIDGE Spencer Sullivan is a former Oak Ridge Town Council member and mayor
Elect Mike Stone
keeping you connected to your community since 1996
I would like to endorse Mr. Mike Stone, a candidate for Oak Ridge Town Council. He has been a dedicated volunteer for not only our Oak Ridge community but also for Oak Ridge Military Academy. I first met him when he was a member of Oak Ridge Town Council and his wife was on Oak Ridge Military Academy’s Board of Trustees. This is the type of leadership family that is a credit to wherever they serve. While volunteering for the
OCT. 21, 2021
Mike Stone’s presence on Oak Ridge Town Council would add needed stability and reasoning to this governing body. I intend to vote for him for Oak Ridge Town Council, and I hope you will too. Steve Wilson, OAK RIDGE
Re-elect Ann Schneider and Jim Kinneman Oak Ridge will be best served to re-elect Ann Schneider and Jim
academy, Mike Stone proved to be both devoted and energetic. ORMA’s goal is to build leaders, and Mike Stone has always set a good example for the academy’s cadets.
The Northwest Observer • Totally local since 1996
Kinneman. The primary interest of the current council is the town’s
candidate ENDORSEMENTS welfare. As a former Finance Committee member, I have personal knowledge of Ann and Jim and have worked closely with them. They are not interested in excessive self-promotion. They avoid creating drama, value teamwork and are supportive of the town’s staff. Two additional candidates have filed for the election. One is a newcomer to the community who has never even served on a town committee. The other, a former council member, was
defeated after one term and in a subsequent election. I’ve read the campaign ads for Schneider, Kinneman and Stone, and all the things supported by them have already been set in motion by our current leadership. I’ve lived here all my life, and I’m interested in the welfare of the community. I think it would be best served by re-electing Ann Schneider and Jim Kinneman. Frank Whitaker, OAK RIDGE
Elect Mike Stone Cathy and I fully endorse Mike Stone for Oak Ridge Town Council. I believe one of the most basic principles of conservatism is to distill power down from distant places to the local level. An election can’t get any more local than a town council. At this level, the social issues that divide us nationally aren’t present, and we’re faced with the practical
issues of keeping our community safe, and our city a desirable place to live. Mike Stone has worked to ensure our rural heritage without increasing our taxes. Doug Nodine, OAK RIDGE Doug Nodine is a current Oak Ridge Town Council member
ing countless volunteer hours to her church and various civic organizations or serving as mayor, she does it with energy, compassion and humility. We have known Ann and her family for several years. You get to truly know people when they are away from the public domain. She is thoughtful, kind,
and has a dedicated work ethic that is rarely seen. Please join us in supporting one of the most outstanding Town Council members Oak Ridge has ever elected – Ann Schneider! Lynn and Ron Black, OAK RIDGE
Elect Mike Stone to Town Council Mike Stone and I served on the Planning and Zoning Board together as well as on the board of another non-profit. Mike does his research, asks the tough questions, and has always supported controlled growth in Oak Ridge so it remains a great place to live and play. He has worked tirelessly as a volunteer in the
community for the best interest of the town and its residents. Mike is a fiscal conservative who will use evidence and logic to make good decisions if elected to the Council. Please give him your support. Patti Paslaru, OAK RIDGE
Endorsement letters for ... SUMMERFIELD
TOWN COUNCIL candidates Elect John Doggett to Town Council
Re-elect Ann Schneider We have lived in Oak Ridge for over 20 years. As founding president/CEO of Bank of Oak Ridge, Ron had the pleasure of working with many residents and business owners within this growing village.
to select the right leaders – leaders who understand our residents’ hopes and dreams. We need leaders who put the interests of our town before their own interests, and who have high moral character.
From its beginnings, our town councils have led us toward independence from the larger cities around us. To build on these early successes, we need
Ann Schneider has demonstrated that she possesses these values and more. She excels at bringing people together to get things done. Whether it’s provid-
I’ve known John Doggett for over 40 years. We met shortly after I started my medical practice on U.S. 220 in the spring of 1979. During John’s childhood, his father, Clark Doggett, owned the pharmacy in Summerfield that was next door to my practice (this practice is now Family Medicine–Summerfield | Wake Forest Baptist Health). John was a fellow in motion – always on the go and learning the value of hard work
The Northwest Observer • Totally local since 1996
on the dairy farm tended by his grandparents and parents. Not one to sit and watch the world go by, John performed many chores on the farm while enjoying his life as a teenager growing up in Summerfield in the 1980s. John’s marriage to Angie has been quite a success; they have synergy and accomplish much as a team. They have two chil-
...Endorsements continued on p. 22
OCT. 21, 2021
candidate ENDORSEMENTS dren, Lexie Cline and Austin Doggett, and one grandchild, Amelia Cline. Lexie and Amelia live on the family farm.
has been a dedicated runner who organizes and successfully holds foot races at the farm several times yearly.
As an adult, John has risen in the construction business due to his hard work accompanied by an abundance of common sense (a commodity that is becoming rarer in our country, it would seem). John has all the time-honored qualities that uniquely qualify him to be a leader: honesty, integrity, a sense of humor, and, his word is his bond. Additionally, he
Another quality I admire in John is that he looks me in the eye when he talks and what he has to say is worth listening to. John, I believe, is the right person at the right time for Summerfield. I support John Doggett for Summerfield Town Council. David M. Kaplan, SUMMERFIELD
Elect Tim Sessoms, John Doggett and Janelle Robinson For the past few years, Summerfield has enjoyed very professional, positive and thoughtful leadership from the majority of our current town council members. We certainly acknowledge and appreciate that Summerfield is a highly desirable, limited services residential community offering a great location and quality of life. This is clearly reflected in the town’s significant growth and development over the past 20 years. In March 1999, while serving on the first elected Summerfield Town Council, I wrote “Both the vision and dream for Summerfield are important, but it is the plan that will get us there. Our planning and implementation decisions will establish how fast and at what density the population of Summerfield will increase…”
OCT. 21, 2021
Our town created a UDO Review Committee to conduct a comprehensive review of the existing Unified Development Ordinance to ensure compliance with the Comprehensive Plan adopted in May 2010; the committee’s work was followed by further review by Summerfield’s Planning and Zoning Board, which proposed modifications to the ordinance. We now have the opportunity to adopt a sensible plan that insures future growth on a thoughtful and planned basis. Implementing the plan requires a town council that is committed to effective leadership and providing thoughtful consideration of all community interests. I find it highly disturbing when a sitting member of Town Council publicly declares, “I will see how everyone
else votes and then vote the opposite way.” That is not a thoughtful way to make critical decisions about important development issues for our town. I strongly encourage the election of Tim Sessoms as mayor of Summerfield. He is a highly experienced and proven business and community leader who is dedicated to sustained, quality development in Summerfield. As a fifth-generation resident of his family’s farmland, John Doggett will be a tremendous addition to our town council. He certainly can relate to our objectives of planned development, which include: preserving the vistas, rural flavor, and small-town charm of Summerfield; offering additional zoning options to encourage housing diversity and allow for seniors’ downsizing and affordable starter homes to keep our Sum-
merfield families from having to move elsewhere as their circumstances change. As a young child, John was a victim of a house fire. He and Janelle Robinson, who is a Summerfield firefighter, are advocates of providing water for fire protection as our community continues to grow. Finally, I strongly endorse Janelle for a seat on Summerfield Town Council. She has demonstrated great leadership skills as a proponent of our community and the integrity of its leaders. Without reservation, I support Tim Sessoms, John Doggett and Janelle Robinson for the key leadership roles in Summerfield. Gary N. Brown, SUMMERFIELD Gary Brown was a member of the first elected Summerfield Town Council
Vote for Dunham, Fox and Perryman Who will be your voice on the Summerfield Town Council? Councilwoman Teresa Perryman is a lifelong Summerfield resident, she is dedicated, prepared and hardworking, committed to protecting rural character and preserving resources, and stands for limited government and low taxes. Greg Fox was born and raised in Summerfield. He served for 38 years in local law
The Northwest Observer • Totally local since 1996
enforcement, promotes transparency in government, stands for low density and limited development and for keeping the citizenry informed and encouraging their participation in local government. Gail Dunham is experienced in local government, is fiscally conservative and focused on spending town funds wisely and opposes public water and sewer. Danny B. Nelson, SUMMERFIELD
Answers to the
Trivia on pg. 18
1. How many terms can a mayor or town council member in Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale serve? C. Elected officials in Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale do not have term limits. As long as they wish to serve and are elected by voters, there is no term limit on mayors and town council members in northwest Guilford County. 2. TRUE or FALSE? In Oak Ridge, Summerfield and Stokesdale, citizens vote for council members and for their mayor. B. FALSE In Oak Ridge citizens do not elect the mayor. Citizens elect the council and then council votes on who will be mayor. In Summerfield, citizens elect their mayor every two years. In Stokesdale, citizens elect their mayor every four years. 3. How often do we vote for president of the United States? B. Every four years 4. What is the longest any U.S. senator has served? C. 50 years Robert Byrd, U.S. senator from West Virginia ,served for over 50 years.
5. What are the legal requirements for presidential candidates, as directed by the Constitution? A. A presidential candidate must be a natural born citizen of the United States, a permanent resident for 14 years, and 35 or older.
Q How long must you reside Q Are there any restrictions on placing poin Guilford County beA
fore being eligible to vote in a municipal election?
You must have been a legal resident of Guilford County for 30 days prior to the election.
Q Are the municipal elections in northwest A
Guilford County towns partisan or non-partisan? Municipal elections in northwest Guilford County are non-partisan.
Q Are the terms for elected officials in northwest A
Guilford County the same?
The mayor of Summerfield is elected to a two-year term; the mayor of Stokesdale is elected to a four-year term, as are Town Council members in Summerfield, Oak Ridge and Stokesdale. Rather than being elected directly by citizens, the mayor of Oak Ridge is elected by his/her fellow council members and serves at the pleasure of the council – so, the council can vote to elect a new mayor from among themselves at any time; historically, however, the mayor in Oak Ridge is elected by council members every two years at the December meeting that follows an election.
Vote early through Oct. 30 (See details on p. 2)
or vote Nov. 2 The Northwest Observer • Totally local since 1996
litical signs on public property, or on how long they can remain up? As outlined in North Carolina’s G.S. 136-32, compliant political signs may be placed in the right-of-way of the state highway system during the period beginning on the 30th day before the beginning date of “one-stop” early voting (which this year was on Oct. 14) and ending on the 10th day after the primary or Election Day. The permittee must obtain the permission of any property owner of a residence, business, or religious institution fronting the right-of-way where a sign would be erected. Signs must be placed in accordance with the following: (1) No sign shall be permitted in the right-of-way of a fully controlled access highway. (2) No sign shall be closer than 3 feet from the edge of the pavement of the road. (3) No sign shall obscure motorist visibility at an intersection. (4) No sign shall be higher than 42 inches above the edge of the pavement of the road. (5) No sign shall be larger than 864 square inches. (6) No sign shall obscure or replace another sign.
Q Isremove it against the law to a political sign? A Yes, again according to G.S. 136-32, it is a Class 3 misdemeanor for a person to steal, deface, vandalize, or unlawfully remove a political sign that has been lawfully placed there.
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