Meet your candidates: Early voting in May 20 election begins Monday
CARROLL COUNTY -- The preferential primary and non-partisan election is scheduled for Tuesday, May 20 from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Early voting will run from Monday, May 5 until May 19, in the Berryville and Eureka Springs courthouses. From Monday through Friday residents can vote from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays -- May 10 and May 17.
All ADA compliant voting will be at the Berryville courthouse. In the event of a run-off, the run-off election will be June 10. The results from the primary will be tallied on May 20 at 7:30 p.m.
The sample ballots for the primary election are available for viewing at the office of the election coordinator in the Berryville courthouse. In the primary, voters can either chose to vote for candidates in Republican or Democratic parties. Either ballot comes with the non-partisan judiciary candidates as well.
The candidates are as follows:
NON-PARTISAN JUDICIARY CANDIDATES
State Supreme Court Associate Justice Position 2
Court of Appeals Judge Robin Wynne was elected to his current position in 2010. He has a bachelor of arts degree from Harvard College and obtained his juries doctorate from the University of Arkansas School of Law. He is a partner at Wynne & Wynne Law Firm in Fordyce, and he has a wife and four children.
Tim Cullen has practiced appellate law in the Arkansas Supreme Court, the Arkansas Court of Appeals and the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. He is a native of Little Rock and graduate of the University of Arkansas, where he served as student body president. He also graduated law school from University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. He lives in Maumelle with his wife Sarah and three children.
Circuit Judge District 19-East, Division 1
District Judge Scott Jackson was elected as the Berryville District Judge in 2009; he served as the Berryville City Attorney from 1994 to 2009. He has also served as the city court judge in both Green Forest and Alpena. He received his law degree from the University of Arkansas in 1989. He also has a bachelor's degree in business administration from the university. He is married with three children.
Circuit Judge Kent Crow was born in Berryville. He graduated from San Francisco State University with a bachelor's degree in political science and completed law school at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Crow was elected as circuit judge in 2008. Before that he served in the U.S. Army, the Berryville City Council and as the District Court judge for Carroll County's Eastern District.
State Supreme Court Associate Justice Position 6
Justice Karen R. Baker graduated Clinton High School in 1981. She received her bachelor of science degree from Arkansas Tech University in 1983 and her juries doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock School of Law in 1987. She served as a public defender in Van Buren and Searcy counties from 1989 to 1995 and was elected to her current position in 2010.
State Supreme Court Associate Justice Position 7
Court of Appeals Judge Rhonda Wood received a bachelor of arts degree at Hendrix, with distinction in politics, and her juries doctorate at Bowen School of Law in 1999. Before being elected to her current position, she was the circuit judge for the 20th Judicial District from 2007 to 2012. She has practiced in Arkansas Court of Appeals, Arkansas Supreme Court, U.S. District Court and the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Court of Appeals Associate Judge-District 3 Position 2
Judge Kenneth S. Hixson was born in Paris, Ark., in Logan County. He worked with his father at the coal mines around Paris when he was growing up. He graduated from Paris High School in 1974, received a bachelor of science degree in mathematics from the University of Central Arkansas in 1978 and a juries doctorate degree from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville in 1982. He was elected to the Arkansas Court of Appeals on Jan. 1, 2013. He is married with two sons.
Prosecuting Attorney District 19 East
Prosecuting Attorney Robert "Tony" Rogers is the incumbent. He was asked to contribute more for his entry but failed to do so by publication.
DEMOCRATIC PARTY CANDIDATES
Lynette "Doc" Bryant received her bachelor of science degree from Delaware State University and her master's degree from North Carolina State University. She graduated medical school at East Carolina University and spent her residency at Howard University. She is a member of Little Rock School District Task Force on Closing the Achievement Gap and has helped the Governor's Council on Fitness with their school programs to decrease childhood obesity.
Mike Ross graduated from Hope High School and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. He owned and operated a family pharmacy in Prescott with his wife for 14 years. He has served on the Nevada County Quorum Court and in the Arkansas State Senate. He represented Arkansas's Fourth District in the U.S. House of Representatives and worked at the Little Rock based, non-profit Southwest Power Pool in 2013.
Senator Mark Pryor serves on six Senate Committees, including the Senate Appropriations Committee. He was first elected to public office in 1990 as a member of the Arkansas State House of Representatives. Pryor was born in Fayetteville on Jan. 10, 1963. He received a bachelor of arts degree in history and his law degree from the University of Arkansas. He worked in private legal practice for more than 10 years.
John Burkhalter grew up in Sylvan Hills. John is a husband, father and small business owner. He is an Eagle Scout and a graduate of the University of Arkansas with a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering.
Representative Nate Steel is a prosecutor and a legislator who grew up in a small town in South Arkansas. After law school, he returned home to work at his father's law firm. He is in his third term representing District 19 in the Arkansas House of Representatives and earned his undergraduate and law degree from the University of Arkansas.
Secretary of State
Susan Inman was born in Little Rock and is married with two sons. After graduating from Hall High School, she attended the University of Central Arkansas and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. She has more than 20 years experience in state and county government. She has served as both a county election commissioner and a state election commissioner. She also received the 2004 Public Servant of the Year Award from the Arkansas Disability Coalition.
Karen Sealy Garcia is a licensed certified public accountant in Hot Springs and alumni of Henderson State University in Arkadelphia. She earned a bachelor of science degree in business administration with a major in accounting and a master's degree in business administration. She is the treasurer of Democratic Party of Arkansas and is married with four children and seven grandchildren.
Auditor of State
Regina Stewart Hampton is a native of Little Rock and a graduate from Hall High School. She earned a degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in criminal justice with a minor in psychology. Her work experiences include employment at the Arkansas Department of Health Vital Records, Shorter College, Baptist Medical Center and Baptist Health Schools of Nursing. Her most recent employment is with the Auditor of State office.
Commissioner of State Lands
Mark Robertson has nearly 30 years of experience as a landscape architect and planner. He is a small business owner and the principal of MESA Landscape Architects. He has provided professional landscape architecture and planning services for a wide array of projects across Arkansas, the United States and globally. He graduated from the University of Arkansas with a bachelor of landscape architecture degree and a master of science degree in plant ecology and horticulture.
State Representative District 97
Charles "Sonny" Carter was born in Pryor, Okla., in 1942. He is a singer/songwriter, he also was a chauffeur for Indiana University and a teacher's aide, who taught high-school-aged students for college professors. He taught guitar, math and other subjects, but he does not have a college education. He has said he has a "pretty darn good self-inflicted education," and he is the "working man's candidate."
JoAnn Harris is running for reelection as the County Assessor. She first took office in 2007. She has a back ground in real estate as she was a realtor in Idaho for four years. Her office took on more responsibilities this year after assuming the roles for mapping, development and 911 coordination. Harris moved to Carroll County in 1995 from California.
Ramona Wilson was elected to the Circuit Clerk position in 1998 and took office January 1999. She attended the Mid-American Business College in Springfield, Mo., with courses in legal secretarial work. She also worked at the Green Forest School District. She has said that she was not sure if this would be her last term or not and that her office has completed the state-mandated conversion for court context program.
Jim Capps graduated from Northwest Community College in South Haven, Miss., with a degree in mortuary science. He became a funeral director and embalmer. He was elected as the county corner in 2013. He lives in Berryville and is married with three sons and nine grandchildren.
Jamie Correia is the current Carroll County clerk; she was elected in 2009. Her office has completed uploading their public records with the Court Connect system for residents to view online. She said that if anyone has any questions about her office or how she can help them, they are welcome to call or come by during her office hours. Correia moved to Carroll County in 1995 from California.
Sam Barr started serving as county judge in January 2009. He was born and raised in Carroll County and served in the United States Air Force. Barr has worked in various trades throughout his life, including welding, heavy equipment, saw milling, pipelining and as co-owner of Davis-Barr Chevrolet car dealership. He is also one of the board of directors of the Ozark Mountain Solid Waste District. He is best known for his management of the county roads after the 2008 flood and the ice storm of 2009.
Randy Mayfield is the only candidate for the Carroll County Democrats that is not an incumbent. His experience includes five years at the Harrison Police Department, nearly 13 years for the Berryville Police, one year of police service in Benton County and four years military service in the Navy.
Kay Phillips has been the tax collector since 1987, and she said she hopes to continue her work. She said keeping up with the changes in policies and technology is daunting, but she still enjoys her job. She also said she works hard at keeping current and can hardly believe how far the county has come.
Cindy Collins is running as an incumbent has been in her position since 1993. She is working through getting her office's documents online. She has worked with the county clerk to get the warrant check process streamlined and said that the county is lucky to have as many local banks as it does to help out.
Justice of the Peace District 2
Sheri Hanson graduated from Eastern New Mexico University with a degree in communications. She has been a part owner of the business West Coast Design Studios, a manufacturing and designing company, for 28 years. She has also been a television director and producer, a court appointed advocate for children and worked in multiple civic organizations. She is originally form California and moved to Carroll County in 2009.
Justice of the Peace District 3
David Mitchell has an associate degree in nursing, a bachelor's degree in nursing, a bachelor's degree in business and psychology and a dual master's degree in health services management and human resource development. He retired as the senior vice president of the Great Plains Regional Medical Center after 38 years in the health care industry. He is currently serving his first term on the Eureka Springs City Council.
Justice of the Peace District 7
Kevin Doss was called and asked to contribute more information to his biography, but failed to do so before publication.
Justice of the Peace District 8
Mike Miller is 62 years old and moved to Carroll County in 1971. He worked at Tanner Hardware for 31 years and has served on the Green Forest City Council for 11. He said he would like people to know that, if elected, he will vote for what he thinks is right for the citizens of Carroll County.
Justice of the Peace District 10
Larry Swofford took office in 1993 to his current position, making him is the longest serving JP in the Quorum Court. He was called to get more information, but did not return the call before publication.
Justice of the Peace District 11
John Howerton is running as an incumbent and took office in 2007. He was called and asked to contribute more information to his biography, but failed to do so before publication.
REPUBLICAN PARTY CANDIDATES
Asa Hutchinson was raised on a farm near Gravette. After graduating from the University of Arkansas Law School, he practiced law in Bentonville. At the age of 31, he was appointed by President Ronald Reagan as the youngest United States Attorney in the nation. He practiced law throughout Arkansas for 21 years before being elected to the U.S. Congress in 1996 and serving as the director of the Drug Enforcement Agency in 2001.
Curtis Coleman was the founding president and CEO of Safe Foods Corporation until fall of 2009, when he retired from the company to give his time and attention to state and national policy. He is a graduate of Conway High School, Central Baptist College in Conway and Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, and he studied in the master of divinity program at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. He is married with three children and eight grandchildren.
Arkansas Lieutenant Governor
State Representative Andy Mayberry is serving his second term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. He represents District 27, which includes parts of Saline and Pulaski counties. He graduated from Sheridan High School and earned a bachelor's degree from Henderson State University. He works in publishing and advertising and has been on the boards of the Little Rock South Lions Club, Community Connections, Arkansas Right to Life and was a chairman of Maple Creek Farms Property Owners Association. He is married with four daughters.
Representative Debra Hobbs of Rogers is serving her second term representing District 94 in the Arkansas House of Representatives. She graduated from high school in Houston, Texas. She earned a bachelor's degree from University of the Ozarks, where she graduated cum laude, and a master's degree from the University of Arkansas. She is also a former counselor and teacher. Hobbs served as the secretary for the Benton County Sunshine School Board. She is married with two children.
Congressman Tim Griffin was elected as the 24th representative of Arkansas's Second Congressional District on Nov. 2, 2010. He grew up in Magnolia, where he attended public school before attending Hendrix College in Conway. He is a cum laude graduate of both Hendrix College and Tulane Law School in New Orleans, where he received his juris doctorate. He also attended graduate school at Pembroke College, Oxford University, in England. Tim is currently serving in his 17th year as an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve.
Leslie Rutledge is an Arkansas lawyer who has spent her entire career in public service. A former prosecutor, her law practice now focuses on administrative law, election law and state and local government. She graduated from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and then the University of Arkansas in Little Rock's Bowen School of Law. Rutledge is admitted to practice law in Arkansas, Washington D.C. and before the Supreme Court of the United States.
Patricia Nation was born and raised in Dumas. She attended undergraduate school at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. She received her law degree from the University of Arkansas Law School at Fayetteville in 1993 and has been a practicing trial and civil rights attorney for more than 18 years. She is a member of the Trial Lawyers Association and the Arkansas Bar. She is licensed to practice law in the Supreme Court of Arkansas and the United States District Court, Eastern and Western Districts.
David Sterling was raised in Texarkana with three siblings. He graduated from Texarkana High School before moving to Little Rock for college in 1987. He earned his undergraduate degree, a master's degree in public administration and law degree at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Before entering the private practice of law, he spent 14 months as assistant city manager in Hope.
Representative Duncan Baird of Lowell is serving his third term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. He represents District 96, which encompasses part of Benton County. He works in investments as a securities trader. He is a graduate of Siloam Springs High School, and he has bachelor's degrees in finance and accounting from the University of Arkansas. He and his wife, Courtney, live in Lowell.
Dennis Milligan was first elected as Saline County Circuit Clerk in November 2010 and is now serving his second term after his re-election in 2012. He is a small business owner who started his company, Water Treatment Service, in 1985. Dennis is also a real estate developer and home builder. He graduated from Little Rock McClellan High School in 1976 and attended the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
Auditor of State
Ken Yang is a native of Benton and first-generation immigrant of Taiwan. He served as the Saline County District Court case coordinator at the prosecutor's office, and later attended Hendrix College, where he graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in history and was presented with an outstanding leadership and service award. He also was an academic honors athlete and lettered in NCAA III tennis.
Representative Andrea Lea of Russellville is serving her third term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. She represents District 71, which includes part of Pope County. She grew up in New Hampshire, Hawaii and California. She graduated from Arkansas Tech University with a degree in emergency management. She was a member of the Russellville City Council and the Pope County Quorum Court.
State Representative District 98
Ron McNair graduated from Alpena High School, where he has also served on the city council, school board and as president of the cemetery board. He is a member of the North Arkansas College Board and the Rural Community Alliance. He is married with two children and five grandchildren.
Jeff Boggs of Green Forest has lived and worked in both Boone and Carroll counties for more than 20 years. Boggs has worked for FedEx Freight for 16 years. Before graduating from Harding University in 1992, Boggs attended North Arkansas College after a semester at Arkansas Tech University in Russellville. He went back and completed his master of business administration degree at Harding University in 2008.
Jack Gentry Jr. has worked in law enforcement for more than 10 years. He started his career at the Carroll County Sheriff's Office as a dispatcher and jailer and at the Berryville Police Department as a reserve police officer. He then worked as a deputy sheriff for Carroll County Sheriff's Office. He currently works at the Harrison Police Department, where he has been for more than five years.
Sheriff Bob Grudek has been in law enforcement for 35 years and is in his fourth term as sheriff. He finished the 2013 fiscal year with every department of the Sheriff's Office under budget, and his department delivered more than 1,000 pounds of fresh produce to local food banks from his jail gardens.
Tom Cotton represents the Fourth Congressional District of Arkansas. A native of Dardanelle, he graduated from Harvard and Harvard Law School. He clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals and practiced law before joining the United States Army as an infantry officer. He worked as a management consultant for McKinsey and Co. He began his first term in Congress in January 2013 and is on the Financial Services and Foreign Affairs Committees.
U.S. Congress District 3
Congressman Steve Womack is a native of Russellville. He graduated from Russellville High School in 1975. Womack earned a bachelor's degree from Arkansas Tech University in 1979. After graduation, he was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Arkansas Army National Guard. On Nov. 3, 1998, Womack was elected mayor of Rogers and served in that capacity for 12 years. In the House, he serves on the Appropriations Committee and the Defense, Financial Services and Labor-Health and Human Services subcommittees.
Secretary of State
Secretary Mark Martin serves as Arkansas's 33rd Secretary of State and was elected to his first term in November 2010. Before that he served three terms as a State Representative, representing District 87 and as President of M3 Engineering. He graduated from Hughes High School and attended the University of Arkansas, earning a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering in 1998. He served as a nuclear engineering laboratory technician and is a Navy veteran. He is married with three children.
Commissioner of State Lands
Commissioner John Thurston is the first Republican to be elected as Land Commissioner since the post became elective in 1874. He is currently serving his first term in office after being elected in November 2010. He attended Henderson State University in Arkadelphia before graduating from Agape College in Little Rock with a diploma in biblical studies. Thurston now resides in Little Rock with his wife, Joanna, and their five children.
State Senate District 5
Senator Bryan King represents Senate District 5, which is comprised of Madison County and portions of Carroll, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Sebastian and Washington counties. He is serving his first term in the Arkansas Senate; he is the chairman of Legislative Joint Auditing Committee and the Executive Committee of Legislative Joint Auditing. In 2006, King was elected to the Arkansas House of Representatives, where he served three consecutive terms.
State Representative District 83
Representative David Branscum of Marshall is serving his second term representing District 83 in the Arkansas House of Representatives He is a graduate of Marshall High School, and he has a bachelor's degree in agriculture/economics from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He is also involved in the lumber and cattle business.
State Representative District 97
Representative Bob Ballinger is serving his first term in the Arkansas House of Representatives. He represents District 97, which includes portions of Madison, Carroll and Washington counties. He received his bachelor of arts degree in social studies at Northeastern State University. He then earned his juris doctorate at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. He is an attorney practicing at his private firm in Berryville. He is involved in Kiwanis and was the previous president of the Berryville Chamber of Commerce.
Betty Neal has served as a district court clerk for 27 years, and her main goals are modernizing the office and cross-training the staff, so that anyone would be able to fill in for someone else. She ran for the same title before in 2012, but lost to Ramona Wilson with roughly 39 percent of the vote.
Justice of the Peace District 2
Charles Olson worked for Alltel Wireless Communication for 11 years and IBM for 30 years as a systems engineer and marketing representative. He has a wife and two children and is a veteran of the United States Air Force. He is currently the assistant fire chief at the Grassy Knob Volunteer Fire Association, a training officer, an emergency first responder and he is also on the Carroll County Search and Rescue Team.
Justice of the Peace District 4
Ron Flake has been a JP for eight years, since he was elected in 2006. He served in the United States Air Force as a fighter pilot for 10 years. He was also a lawyer who practiced mostly business litigation for 30 years. He graduated college from Air Force Academy and law school at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, Texas. Flake said he is trying to bring change to the county.
Justice of the Peace District 5
Matt Phillips works for New Elite Press Inc., a Christian publishing company; before that, he worked in construction. He is running as an incumbent and was elected in 2012. He has a wife and two daughters. He is also a member of Church on the Hill and the Arkansas Youth Shooting Sports Program.
Justice of the Peace District 6
Joe Lee Mills was born in Benton County and moved to Carroll County in 1968. He has been retired for nearly 17 years, after being a Berryville High School coach for 28 years. He has been a JP for 10 years, he said. He is also a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.
Justice of the Peace District 7
Andrew J. Willhelm graduated from Berryville High School and is a 20-year veteran of the United States Army who was deployed to Afghanistan. He is also a member of the Gideons International, the Cattleman's Association, the NRA and of the Carroll County Republican Party.
Justice of the Peace District 8
Donald W. McNeely is running as an incumbent and took office in 2007. McNeely is a U.S. Navy veteran of the Vietnam War and a previous election commissioner for Newton County. He received the Green Forest Chamber of Commerce Person of the Year Award in 2010. He was also a former member of the Green Forest Planning Committee, the American Legion treasurer and the president of the Carroll County Gideons International.
Justice of the Peace District 9
Roger Hall taught biomedical and industrial electronics at at North Arkansas College in Harrison for nearly 30 years. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. He was born in Boone County and moved to Carroll County in 1971. He is a also a United States Army veteran of the Vietnam War and has been married for more than 44 years. He has two sons and four grandchildren.
Editor's Note: The first part of this story ran in the May 2 Weekend edition of CCN. The second part will appear in the May 6 Midweek edition.