Field of candidates for upcoming election continues to grow

Published 3:20 pm Tuesday, January 23, 2018

With three weeks to go before the deadline to qualify as a candidate for the county’s Primary Election in May, more than 70 residents have picked up petitions to run for office.

As of noon on Tuesday, Jan. 23, 74 individuals picked up petitions to run for county office. Of those 74, a total of 33 qualified as candidates but one of those who qualified turned in a letter formally withdrawing from the election.

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Individuals wishing to run for any of the county offices up for election this year have until noon on Feb. 15 to turn in their petitions and qualify as candidates.

The May election will feature primaries for both the Carter County Republican Party and the Carter County Democratic Party. Candidates seeking the nomination of their party must qualify for and run in the primary election on May 1. The winners of the primaries will then go on to the General Election on August 2 to face off against the winners of the opposing party’s primary as well as any candidates who have qualified as independent candidates. Those individuals wishing to run as independent candidates without the endorsement of a political party do not have to compete in the primary election process, but they must still meet the same Feb. 15 qualification deadline according to Carter County Administrator of Elections Tracy Harris.

Every county office except for the Assessor of Property will be on the ballot in 2018. Under state law, the Assessor of Property is elected in the off-year cycle. Carter County Assessor of Property Ronnie Taylor was re-elected in 2016.

To qualify as a candidate for either party’s primary election or as an independent, residents must complete a candidate petition.

Each candidate petition must contain the signatures of at least 25 registered voters in order for the candidate to qualify. Those seeking election to a county-wide office — such as Mayor or Sheriff — can obtain signatures from registered voters residing anywhere in Carter County. Those running for district-specific offices — such as County Commission or Constable — must obtain their 25 signatures from registered voters residing within that district.

One potential candidate, Ray Lyons, picked up qualification petitions for two county offices on Jan. 12 — one for the office of Carter County Mayor and one for the office of County Commissioner representing the county’s 7th District.

“Candidates can pick up papers for more than one office, but they can only turn in for one of them,” Harris explained. As of noon on Tuesday, Jan. 23, Lyons had not turned in a completed petition for either office.

Below is a list of individuals who have picked up petitions seeking public offices in the specified races as either candidates for a political party nomination in the May primaries or as independent candidates who will appear on the ballot in the August general election. Those individuals who have already returned their paperwork and qualified as a candidate are listed with a τ symbol after their name.

Carter County Mayor:

Rusty Barnett τ

Larry Shell τ

Danny Ward

Leon Humphrey τ

Ray Lyons

Carter County


Rocky Croy τ

Dexter Lunceford τ

Steve Stevenson τ

County Clerk:

Bruce Pierce τ

Patsy Lewis τ

Mary Gouge τ


Randall Lewis τ

Walter F. Andrews Jr.

Register of Deeds:

Jarrod Ellis τ

Jessica Markland τ

Adam Townsend



Roger Colbaugh τ

Circuit Court Clerk:

Johnny Blankenship τ

Carter County


(Residents elect three per district)

• 1st District

Willie Campbell τ

Dr. Robert Acuff

Steven Blevins

Philip Stenstream

• 2nd District

Richard Guinn

Al Meehan

John Babb

Mike Hill

• 3rd District

Brad Johnson

Charles VonCannon

Ronnie Trivett

Kelvin G. Moffett

• 4th District

Isaiah Grindstaff

William “Ol’ Gord” Grant

Austin Jaynes

Jerry Proffitt

• 5th District

Ross Garland

Kevin Arnold

Edward Jordan τ

• 6th District

Travis Hill τ

Randall Jenkins

Donnie Cable

John G. Lewis

Gary Bailey

• 7th District

Ray Lyons

• 8th District

Myles Cook τ

Rick Richardson

Robin McKamey

Kelly Collins

Cody McQueen


(Residents elect two per district)

• 1st District

Ronald Reed τ

Larry P. Perry τ

Gary W. Perry τ

• 2nd District

Barney Brown τ

Leonard Johnson τ

Brian Keener

Roy A. Coffey

Paul Birchfield τ

DeWayne Sabisch

Julie Guinn

• 3rd District

Scotty Hall τ

Jerry Miller

Robert “Bob” Carroll

Scott Whaley

• 4th District

Jason Jones τ

Harvey Shaffer τ

Roger Lunceford

Bryan Russell

• 5th District

Larry Presnell τ

Mark Carrier τ

• 6th District

John Henson τ

Bobby Trivette

• 7th District

Gabriel “Seth” Babb τ

Ken Potter τ

• 8th District

Dave Ryan