With elections for many county positions rapidly approaching on Nov. 5, many candidates — both incumbent and newcomers — are running unopposed.
Of the four constitutional officer positions in this election, only one is a contested race: commissioner of the revenue.
Newcomer Kristin Worsham will run against Robin Coles-Goard, the current chief deputy commissioner of revenue. Incumbent Shirley Hammock will not run again after completing one term.
Coles-Goard said her 34 years of experience in public service and knowledge of the county’s operations has prepared her well for the position.
“If elected, I will give the citizens of Pittsylvania County a working commissioner of revenue that can hit the ground running on Jan. 1 without any interruption in the workings of the office,” she said.
Worsham, a certified public accountant, has 20 years of private sector experience she believes will translate well to this position.
“I care deeply about our county and its residents; I want to do all I can to help it prosper,” she said in her candidacy announcement.
The other three constitutional officer elections include incumbents running unopposed: Mike Taylor for sheriff; Bryan Haskins for commonwealth’s attorney; and Vincent Shorter for county treasurer.
In 2015, the board of supervisors and the school board entered into staggered terms, which leaves four districts up for election this year: Chatham-Blairs, Staunton River, Tunstall and Westover.
In the Chatham-Blairs district, incumbent Bob Warren is running unopposed for his second term. Timothy Dudley is running unopposed in the Staunton River district to replace Elton Blackstock.
Three candidates are vying for the supervisor spot in the Tunstall District: incumbent Tim Barber, Vic. Ingram, and Hugh T. “Doo” Kelly.
With years of service on different local boards, Ingram said he is running with the hope of instilling fresh blood and ideas and helping the board become proactive instead of reactive.
“My platform is relatively simple: I’m pro education, public safety and economic growth,” he said.
Kelly could not be reached to comment for this story.
Barber, who is running for his fifth consecutive term on the board, said his focus will be on continued economic development, education funding and providing internet for rural areas and referenced his history as reason to choose him again.
“I think I’ve proven my leadership over sixteen years serving the county,” he said.
In the Westover District, incumbent Ronald Scearce is aiming to maintain his spot against Jacqueline Menefee.
Menefee is retired after 32 years working with the Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement and would attempt to hold regular community meetings.
“It is important to represent the people,” she said in the release for her announcement. “Everyone is a potential stakeholder if engaged.”
Scearce, who was first elected as the Westover Supervisor in 2015, pointed to the county’s economic improvement in terms of job creation and unemployment as reasons to reelect him.
“Throughout my first term, I have been focused on making sound decisions for the people that I represent,” he said. “I hope they will look at my record of leadership and allow me to continue to serve them.”
Elections for the Dan River, Callands-Gretna and Bannister supervisor and school board positions will take place in 2021.
For the Virginia State Senate, Pittsylvania County residents will vote either in the 15th or 20th districts, depending on where they live.
In the 15th District, incumbent Frank Ruff, R-Clarksville, will run against Virginia Smith, D. In the 20th District, incumbent Bill Stanley, R-Glade Hill, seeks to hold off Sherman Witcher, I.
For the Virginia House of Delegates, county residents are split between districts 14 and 16. Incumbent Les Adams, R-Chatham, will face off against Dustin Evans, L, in district 16 and newcomer Eric Stamps, D, will challenge incumbent Danny Marshall, R-Danville, in district 14.
The deadline to announce candidacy for these positions was June 11. The only position for which people still can register to run is the special election for Hurt town council, according to the Pittsylvania County Registrar’s office. The deadline to file to run in that election is Friday at 5 pm.
Ayers reports for the Register & Bee. Reach him at (434) 791-7981.