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Drake bows out
By David Leone
WAKE FOREST — Late last week, two people filed to run for Wake Forest’s two town board seats, including incumbent Margaret Stinnett and challenger Shinica Thomas. And another resident is promising to run.
But sitting Commissioner Frank Drake is declining to refile after two terms as commissioner, leaving his seat up for grabs.
“Eight years is enough for me. It’s been a lot of fun, I’ve learned a lot, but I have a new grandson coming in September and I still carry on an active (law) practice,” he said.
Former commissioner candidate Jim Thompson has said he is definitely going to run again, but had not yet filed as of press deadline.
Both Thompson and Thomas serve on the town’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Board. And Stinnett is that board’s ex-officio member for the board of commissioners.
Thomas could not be reached for comment by press deadline. She lives at 2341 Rainy Lake St. in the Stonegate at St. Andrews subdivision.
Stinnett, retired owner of the former Wake Forest Jones Hardware, lives at 405 Durham Road. She is married to former firefighter Richard Stinnett.
Stinnett is angling for her third term on town board. Her strongest push, to get dirt roads in town paved, was completed this year. She has no new objectives, but wants to see initiatives through.
“There are still things that need to be finished,” Stinnett said. “I’d like to see the UDO in action, I want to see the Renaissance Centre up and running. I think there’s still things that are important that need to be done in town and I want to be a part of them.”
Thompson, CEO of Association Executives of North Carolina, lives at 9713 Precious Stone Drive in Shearon Farms, with his wife, Hollyn and two children. He unsuccessfully ran for town board in 2011. He promises to bring “new ideas” to the board, particularly in helping small businesses thrive.
“I want Wake Forest to be a town where people can feel like they can live here, work here, play here, shop here,” Thompson said Tuesday. “We have such a great community and I really just want to continue that tradition.”
The Franklin County Board of Elections saw a flurry of activity over the last week as the length of candidates filing for election is growing.
Several were incumbents throwing their hats in for another term. They include Bunn Mayor Marsha Strawbridge, Centerville Mayor Margaret Nelms, Centerville town council members Rex Foster and Amy Denton and Franklinton commissioner Art Wright.
But a few towns have seen new faces wanting to come aboard.
In Bunn, Sherry Mercer has filed for commissioner. She has been instrumental in helping organize the Bunn centennial festivities.
The Louisburg town council has two challengers. One is Pat Walker, who ran unsuccessfully last year for county commissioners, and Tom Clancy.
So far only newcomers have filed in Youngsville. In addition to last week’s filing by Terry D. Hedlund, this week George Blaine Dillard put his hat in the ring. So far, none of the three incumbents or the mayor have filed for re-election, which could mean their seats are up for grabs.
Filing for all races ends Friday at noon.
— Carrie C. Causey contributed to this report.