Qualifying for the primary election, set for July 31, came to a close at noon Friday and brought out 18 candidates for 13 open positions.
North Bryan residents Noah Covington and incumbent Joe Kendrick qualified for the District 1 seat on the Bryan County Board of Commissioners.
Kendrick, who was the only candidate of 18 to file as a Democrat, seeks his second term on the board after defeating former commissioner Rufus “Ed” Bacon in 2008.
Kendrick said he decided to run for another term on the board because there are some things he’d like to see done, though he shared no specifics.
“I think it’s a pretty good board and we’re working together to try and get something done for the county,” Kendrick said.
Covington, who filed as a Republican, said previously his desire to seek office stems from a need for leadership in North Bryan. Covington works as the plant manager for the Pembroke Telephone Company where he has worked for 22 years.
Bacon is also planning to run for election to the District 1 seat, though he did not file during the qualifying period. According to his campaign Facebook page, he will run as an Independent candidate.
Current commission Chairman Jimmy Burnsed was the only person to qualify for the chairman position. He qualified as a Republican.
Burnsed, who is the chairman at Bryan Bank and Trust, said previously he has enjoyed working in the community and wants to continue doing so. He also said he looks forward to working with the budget special purpose local option sales tax funds.
The District 3 county commission seat brought two South Bryan residents out for qualifying. Billy Albritton and Steven Myers both qualified as Republican candidates.
Albritton, who currently serves as the chairman of the Richmond Hill Planning and Zoning Commission, described his decision to run for county commission as a “progressive step.”
“I’ve been involved in Richmond Hill city government for 16 years,” Albritton said. “I’m currently the chairman of the Planning and Zoning Commission in Richmond Hill and it’s just the next step in things.”
Albritton, who works as a construction manager for Industrial Metalworks in Savannah, said his management skills and knowledge of government makes him qualified.
“I want to be and I am involved in what’s going on, and I try to look out for the needs of my fellow residents,” he said.
Political newcomer Myers said his business experience makes him qualified for the position.
“I want to see our community prosper,” said Myers, who has owned a mortgage company in Atlanta for 20 years. “I’ve got a lot of business experience. I’ve learned from running these businesses how to manage through up and down cycles, maximizing efficiency through vision, automation and time management of personnel. Integrity has been key in my success.”
Myers is the owner of the recently renovated Sawmill Plaza on of Ford Avenue in Richmond Hill. He said through renovating the property, he became familiar with grant funding.
“There are grants out there — federally and state — that I would like to help the current commissioners find, so maybe we can utilize them in growing our county smartly,” Myers said.
Read more about the candidates in the May 26 edition of the News.