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Editor’s Note: An * indicates that the candidate is the incumbent

Board of Commissioners District 1

Sig Hutchinson (D)

What are your qualifications to be on the Board of Commissioners?

  • Has a business career in communications.

  • Been working to create safe and healthy communities where citizens can thrive through vision, action and leadership for the past 25 years.

  • Primarily responsible for a 200-plus mile greenway system.

  • Ran for county commissioner in 2014 to put a $2.3 billion transport referendum on the ballot that was passed in 2016.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being on the Board of Commissioners?

  • Transportation: Working to create a variety of options through a $2.3 billion referendum.

  • Affordable Housing: Passed a 1 cent property tax for affordable housing, totaling to $14 million a year. Also built over 750 affordable housing units. 

  • Creating Safe and Healthy Communities: Chairs and advises the LiveWell Wake initiative, which is currently working on seven initiatives, including affordable housing, access to jobs, education, mental health and opioid addiction, working with vulnerable communities and “familiar faces” that are high utilizers of jails, homeless shelters and emergency rooms. 

To learn more about Hutchinson and his issues, visit his campaign website

 

Greg Jones (R)

Jones was unable to participate in an interview prior to publishing this story. To learn more about Jones and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Board of Commissioners District 2

Matt Calabria (D)

Calabria is a Democrat who is running unopposed. For more information about Calabria and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Board of Commissioners District 3

Maria Cervania (D)

What are your qualifications to be on the Board of Commissioners?

  • Has an education in public education, public health and government.

  • Worked in planning and crisis management during the early HIV/AIDS epidemic and the H1N1 virus pandemic.

  • Developed partnerships in support of creating affordable housing in Wake County

  • Fought HB2 and advocates for LGBTQIA+ rights.

  • Advocated for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, environment/sustainability, employment/income equity and other societal benefits for Wake County.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being on the Board of Commissioners?

  • Protecting Wake County from COVID-19: Wants to optimize our COVID-19 response to accelerate recovery and address the barriers that limit access to health care, and support residents who experience health challenges, especially in mental health, crisis services and substance abuse treatment.

  • Equity For All: Will support any changes to the way policing is done in Wake County to have transparency and accountability, actively explore establishing a civilian review board and conducting a regular community survey, strengthening the community’s right to record law enforcement and requiring use of body-worn cameras.

  • Balancing the Economic Environment: Wants to be conscientious with general revenue and CARES Act funds to address needs, back efforts for rental assistance and housing support so that people have a safe place to shelter from COVID-19 and wants to increase transparency and accountability to ensure that our tax dollars are going to good use.

To learn more about Cervania, and her issues, visit her campaign website.

Steve Hale (R)

Hale did not respond by time of publication. For more information about Hale and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Board of Commissioners District 4

Susan P. Evans (D)

Evans is a Democrat who is running unopposed. For more information about Evans and her issues, visit her campaign Facebook page.

Board of Commissioners District 5

James West (D)

West is a Democrat who is running unopposed. For more information about West and his issues, visit his campaign Facebook page.

Board of Commissioners District 6

Karen J. Weathers (D)

Weathers did not respond by time of publication. For more information about Weathers and her issues, visit her campaign website.

 

Shinica Thomas (R)

Thomas did not respond by time of publication. For more information about Thomas and her issues, visit her campaign website.

Board of Commissioners District 7

Faruk Okcetin (R) 

What are your qualifications to be on the Wake County Board of Commissioners?

  • Small Business Entrepreneur: Okcetin has been involved in a range of business endeavors over the last 25 years and says that, through his experiences, he learned the meaning of hard work and how to get results. He said that to be successful in business, you cannot borrow and spend your way to success and believes the same holds true for the government.

  • Has consulted with various businesses, individuals and groups over the years to apply his learned knowledge to help solve problems and promote efficiency.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being on the Wake County Board of Commissioners? 

  • Public Safety: Believes in supporting and working with local law enforcement to make sure they are fully trained and ready to help stifle criminal activity, while providing assurance to citizens that injustice will not be tolerated

  • Wake County Debt: States that Wake County currently has $2.5 billion in debt. To remedy this, he supports looking for irregularities and inefficiencies in the budget by auditing county agencies, reexamining the budget by line item and cutting costs wherever possible.

  • Reopening the Economy, Protecting Current and Future Businesses: Supports establishing short and long-term goals with businesses to help them in recovering from the economic effects of the pandemic. Okcetin states he has a “pandemic response protocol,” which he intends on introducing as a member of the board. Okcentin also plans to establish a dashboard where businesses can communicate their needs with the board.

  • Low Cost of Living and Access to Affordable Housing: Says he will not vote to increase property taxes or prepared food and beverage taxes. Okcetin wants to work with the local builders to ensure more rental units can be built to keep rents low, while ensuring that more “starter homes” can be constructed. This would require the Board of Commissioners to reexamine zoning regulations.

To learn more about Okcetin and his issues, visit his campaign website

Vickie Adamson (D)

What are your qualifications to be on the Board of Commissioners?

  • Has an accounting degree from East Carolina University.

  • Worked in corporate finance for 15 years.

  • Spent 13 years in public school advocacy. Adsomson said that she realized early on that, in order to get anything for the public school system, she had to get political.

  • Currently is the incumbent for the 7th District and has served in the role for two years. Adamson also serves as the vice chair of the Board of Commissioners.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being on the Board of Commissioners?

  • COVID-19: States that the county has had a strong public health response to the pandemic. The county has over 200 contact tracers, has people answering phones, added nurses and created four different free drive-thru testing locations. Adamson says they are preparing for when there is a vaccine so they can administer it smoothly for those who want it.

  • Affordable Housing: Said she believes that Wake County is in one of the “biggest housing crises in this century” with people who lost their jobs due to the virus. Adamson said she wants to implement a program to help people catch up on their rent and pay their rent until they can get back on their feet. Adamson added that, in the past two years, the county has been building more affordable housing units and intends to keep that up.

  • General Human Services: Wants to focus on issues facing parents and children, such as prenatal care, childhood immunizations and general child safety.

To learn more about Adamson and her issues, visit her campaign website

Register of Deeds

Tammy L. Brunner (D)

What are your qualifications to be the register of deeds?

  • Worked in progressive politics for 20 years in Wake County.

  • Has experience managing people in fast-paced, public-facing environments.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being the register of deeds?

  • Affording Housing and Transportation: The register of deeds has no direct impact on either of these issues, but wants to be a leader in the community, building relationships and educating residents about the office and the services it provides. With the coronavirus pandemic, too many residents are close to foreclosure or eviction, and Brunner wants to help protect their rights by providing clear guidance and record keeping.

  • Accessibility: Will work to make the office more accessible, which includes advocating for better transportation options, so that people can get to the records they are trying to access.

To learn more about Brunner and her issues, visit her campaign website

Charles Gilliam (R) 

What are your qualifications to be the register of deeds?

  • Has been the register of deeds since 2017.

  • Holds a B.S. in business administration, an MBA and a J.D. summa cum laude.

  • Previous work includes being an adjunct professor at North Carolina State University.

In your opinion, what are the biggest issues in Wake County currently? How can you remedy these issues while being the register of deeds?

  • North Carolina’s “Stay Open” Plan: Millions of dollars of income, and billions in capital, flow through the register of deeds office monthly. He wants the office to stay open in a way that does not put our local economy at risk, and all the while protects our staff and customers. Since March, 100% of their operations are conducted by mail, online or by video conference. No member of the public needs to leave their home or office to use their services. 

To learn more about Gilliam and his issues, visit his campaign website

Nonpartisan Offices

Board of Education District 5

Jim Martin

Martin is running unopposed. For more information about Martin and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor

M. C. Brock 

Brock refused to comment for this publication. She said “her record speaks for itself.” 

Jean-Luc Duvall 

What are your qualifications?

  • As part of his undergraduate degree, he conducted a nationwide research project on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) and each state’s legislatures to determine the relationship between toxic releases reported and proposed environmental legislation.

  • Completed a study in 2016 to assess the issues North Carolina fabric mills faced in regards to processing hemp fiber.

  • Graduated from Elon University in 2016 with a B.A. in political science

  • Currently works with environmental activism organizations.

What are the biggest issues in Wake County currently pertaining to your desired elected position? What are your plans to fix them?

  • Growth: Population growth in Wake County increases natural resource concerns with increased use and development.

  • Land Use: Alarmingly quick loss of farmland and forest that can be mitigated through non-traditional agriculture, prioritizing county funding to protect water quality and local foods and encouraging urban agriculture and community gardening.

  • Community Development: Believes the protection of water quality and “the logical extension of (sub)urban development” are competing objectives, and believes we must responsibly plan community development and redevelop our existing developments to preserve our natural areas.

  • Climate Change: Believes this is a looming threat that must be met with resiliency planning, crop diversification, improved water management practices, replacement of aging infrastructure, installing proper drainage systems and strengthening power independence through community solar grids.

To learn more about Duvall and his issues, visit his campaign website

Marshall Harvey

Harvey did not respond by time of publication. To learn more about Harvey and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Scott Lassiter 

What are your qualifications?

  • Received a bachelor's degree from NC State, a master’s degree from North Carolina Central University in school administration and is currently studying at NC State for a doctorate in education administration.

  • Former councilman for the town of Apex and also a former teacher.

  • Is currently a professional public administrator, working as a middle school assistant principal in the Wake County Public School System.

What are the biggest issues in Wake County currently pertaining to your desired elected position? What are your plans to fix them?

  • Over-development: supports “purposeful zoning, planning and by increasing incentives like tax breaks for those seeking to protect their land from development” in order to strike a balance between developers and residents.

  • Watershed Protection: wants to strengthen requirements for stormwater management dives to accommodate more intense rainfall. He supports using federal and state money for river/stream/lake restoration projects and wants to improve educational measures like storm drain markings that indicate where the body of water ultimately flows to.

  • Soil Regeneration/Farmland Support: supports incentivizing farmers to rotate and rest their fields through grants, tax-credits and any other feasible support for farmers. Lassiter said that, if elected, he will work with family farmers to ensure that they can maintain their farms as well as work with them on other issues, like eradicating food deserts in underserved areas by establishing pop-up farmers markets.

To learn more about Lassiter and his issues, visit his campaign website.

Arts & Entertainment Editor

My name is Austin Dunlow and I am the Arts & Entertainment Editor at Technician. I'm in the Graduating Class of 2021 with a major in Political Science. I have been at Technician since February of 2019.