COUNTY ROUNDUP: Winterville's Jackson wins sixth term; Simpson mayor defeated by newcomer
By Ginger Livingston
The Daily Reflector
Tuesday, November 7, 2017
Three of four incumbent mayors were re-elected in municipal elections outside of Greenville, according to Tuesday's unofficial election results.
The exception occurred in the Village of Simpson where Richard Zeck, who has lived there less than three years, defeated incumbent David C.Boyd Jr. 85 to 64 votes. Two write-in votes also were cast.
“I am happy that people would give a complete stranger a chance because they were looking for change,” said Zeck, who is the executive director of the Pitt County Council on Aging.
Boyd said he was disappointed and wanted to wait until the results were finalized before commenting.
In Winterville, Pitt County's second largest municipality, Mayor Doug Jackson was returned for a sixth, four-year term.
Jackson received 426 votes, according to the unofficial count. Runner up Councilwoman Veronica W. Roberson received 397 votes, Calvin C. Henderson had 275 votes and Tucker Moore received 190 votes. Four write-in votes also were cast.
“I just hope we continue the progress and the growth that Winterville has had for the past 20 years,” Jackson said. The completion of the Laurie Ellis Road extension, which will tie into N.C. 11 south, should bring exciting possibilities to the community, he said.
"That area is zoned industrial so there is potential for big growth. It's prime property for a hotel or motel because it's right on the road," he said.
While Roberson lost to Jackson, her seat was not up for election this year so she will continue serving on council.
“Veronica and I get along pretty well,” Jackson said. “I knew she was going to run so it wasn't a surprise.”
Farmville Mayor Robert L. “Bobby” Evans won a 10th, two-year term, receiving 475 votes to challenger Heather Irvin’s 318 votes. Fifty-nine votes were cast for a write-in candidate.
“I am grateful for the support I had and the confidence the people had in me, that I was the best person to lead Farmville in the next two years,” Evans said.
Continuing the development of Farmville's downtown remains a top priority, he said.
“With the arts we’ve determined we can be a community of fine arts and we can build on that,” Evans said. “But like I said during the campaign, we need a well-rounded economy and that means the arts and commercial business downtown as well as industrial growth.”
Grifton's incumbent mayor, Billy Ray Jackson, won another term, receiving 235 votes. Challengers Jeff Gaddy and Mary Newton Moore received 116 and 78 votes, respectively.
Jackson could not be reached for comment.
Also on the ballot throughout Pitt County:
Three seats were up on the board of commissioners. In Ward 3 Raymond Langley defeated Buddy Blake 367 votes to 222. In Ward 4, Johnny Davis defeated Donald Skinner and Thurman Vincent 334 to 219 and 49. In Ward 5, Phyllis Ross defeated Barbara Whitehead 356 to 239.
Gloristine Brown was the only candidate for mayor. Five people ran for five seats on the Board of Commissioners: Janet Davis, Carl Wilson, Ed Dennis, Diana Wright and Thomas Asbell all were elected, along with Brown.
Four candidates ran for two seats on the town’s board of commissioners: David Shackleford received 518 votes and Alma Hobbs 496 got votes to win the seats. Jamin Dixon got 422 votes and W. Mark Wilson received 94.
No races were contested. Shirley Mitchell was elected to the mayor’s post and Kathy Parker, Alex Albright and Bill Anderson were elected as commissioners.
Three people ran for two seats on the town's board of commissioners: Raymond Oakes received 307 votes, Claude Kennedy, 281 votes and D. Ingles 78 votes. Thirty-eight write-in votes also were cast.
A mixed drink referendum in Grifton failed with 253 votes against it and 172 votes for it.
Seven people ran for five seats on the town's board of aldermen: Gerald Whitley received 47 votes, Eleanor H. Farr 41 votes, Kyle Hodges 39 votes, Ronnie J. Bowling 35 votes, Ted Bowles 31 votes and Thomas “Tom” Dixon and Debbie Sekulski each received 24 votes.
Grimesland voters do not elect a mayor; the board of alderman choose the person from among themselves.
There was no contested race for the village council. Dianne Thomas, Brenda Gatlin Hawkins and Mary Staton Moye received 93, 89 and 83 votes, respectively. Forty-five write-in votes were cast.
Three people ran for two seats in the regular council election. Johnny Moye received 785 votes, Mark C. Smith received 640 votes and Katrina M. Jones received 393 votes.
In the special election for the unexpired term ending in 2019, John Hill received 421 votes, Ricky Hines received 413 votes and David Hooks received 374 votes.
The election results will be finalized after the canvass is conducted Nov. 17.
Contact Ginger Livingston at email@example.com or 252-329-9570. Follow her on Twitter @GingerLGDR.