Getting to know local politicians

Getting to know local politicians

The 2020 election is approaching very quickly. Early voting started on October 19, and Election Day is November 3. Make a plan and vote! We have less than thirty days to decide who will be representing our country and communities for the several years. We all know who is running for president, but you may not know who is running for our local offices here in Fayetteville, Arkansas. City and state government is just as important as the federal government. Knowing who you want to represent you and your community is going to be a very important step you will need to take before heading to your local polling place.

Lioneld Jordan is running for re-election as mayor. According to his website, he plans to focus on economic development, promoting the trails and outdoors, protecting first responders, and ensuring public health. Tom Terminella is running for mayor as well. According to his website, he plans to focus on supporting law enforcement, promoting economic growth, improving infrastructure, and developing parking solutions. I have reached out to both candidates and I will update the story with their statements.

Terra Stevenson is running for District Court Judge. For the last 14 years, she has been practicing as a prosecutor for Washington County.

“I would hope to be the kind of judge that the legal community respected and felt had earned the position by hard work and diligence in her legal career,” said Stevenson about what she hopes to accomplish as judge, “I want to be a judge who shows compassion towards those who come before me.”

Her website mentions she believes that experience is the best teacher. “I also have spent literally thousands of hours in the courtroom, so I know that I have a solid understanding of the law and rules that govern the courtroom,” Stevenson says about her experience.

She has been responsible for thousands of felony cases. Stevenson is passionate about helping victims, especially children.

“I see first hand the pain and suffering that people go through when either themselves or someone they love has been victimized. I think that has definitely been an education in how to deal with people and talk to people even about the most painful and difficult subjects, and it has really instilled in me a sense of empathy for what other people go through.”

Mark Scalise is also running for District Court Judge. The Q&A section on his website says that he wants to “Help people, not ruin lives.” He also talks about how he wants to put an emphasis on alternatives to incarceration. “As circumstances warrant, this could include community service, therapy, payment of fines, participation in victim impact panels, and additional mandated restitution.” I am working on getting a statement from Scalise and I will update this story with it.

Nicole Clowney is running for State Representative. According to her website, she plans to focus on making things easier for people with ailments due to occupational hazards. She also wants to protect abuse survivors by making it possible for them to break leases early if their abuser finds them. Clowney is working on preventing gun violence. I have reached out to Clowney for a statement, I will update this story when I receive it.

Denise Garner, David Whitaker, Brian Hester, John LaTour are all also running for State Representative. I am currently working on reaching out to these people. I will update this article when I receive the statements.

D’Andre Jones is running for City Council in Ward 1 (Ward 1 is the south Fayetteville area). According to Jones’s website, his mission is “to create an equitable, inclusive, and safe community that thrives on diversity and ensures upward social and economic mobility to every Fayetteville resident in all stages of life.”

“People Over Politics,” is Jones’s slogan. It is featured on many signs across Ward 1. Jones plans to address affordable housing for all Fayetteville residents. He also plans to address discriminatory and inequitable leasing practices. On Jones’s website he also mentions his previous advocacy for mental health awareness. He plans on helping marginalized communities. I have reached out to Jones for a statement and I will update when I receive one.

Pedro Fimbres, Oroo Oyioka, and Tanner Pettigrew are also running for City Council in Ward 1. Matthew Petty and William Chesser are running for city council in Ward 2. Sarah Bunch and Peter Tonnessen are running for City Council in Ward 3. Kyle Smith, Adam Fire Cat, Holly Hertzberg, and Paul Waddell are all running for City Council in Ward 4. I am working on reaching out to these people and I will update this story with statements.

Knowing who you want to represent you and your community is very important, but actually going out and casting your vote is more important. Voting has already started in Fayetteville and ends on November 3. Tell your friends and family, make a plan, and vote!

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